H. Scott Fingerhut

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H. Scott Fingerhut
Assistant Director, Trial Advocacy Program

J.D., Emory University School of Law
B.A., University of Virginia

Professor Fingerhut comes to the College of Law with more than 16 years of law teaching experience and 23 years as an AV-Preeminent Peer Review Rated criminal trial and appellate litigator. Before joining the FIU College of Law faculty, Professor Fingerhut began in 1995 in the Litigation Skills Program at the University of Miami School of Law, a position he held for 10 years. In 2000, Professor Fingerhut accepted a four-year appointment in FIU’s School of Policy and Management, teaching Criminal Constitutional Law and Procedure, Criminal Law Theory, Law and Social Control, and Judicial Process and Policy in the undergraduate and Master’s Degree criminal justice programs. For the past six years, Professor Fingerhut has served as Assistant Director of the FIU College of Law’s Trial Advocacy Program, teaching Trial Advocacy, Pretrial Litigation (criminal and civil), Criminal Procedure, Criminal Law, and the Criminal and Civil Law Externship Clinic. To maintain his undergraduate ties, Professor Fingerhut was made a Faculty Fellow in The Honors College at FIU, and, recently, was named Director of The Honors College Pre-Law Programs.

A frequent lecturer and writer on criminal justice matters, Professor Fingerhut is called upon often to pen amicus briefs on behalf of local, state, and national organizations in defense of our liberties. Professor Fingerhut is also very active in The Florida Bar, serving as Chair-Elect and Continuing Legal Education Chair of the Criminal Law Section, and a newly-appointed member of the Florida Innocence Commission. Professor Fingerhut also serves on the Florida Supreme Court Criminal Court Steering Committee’s Post-Conviction Relief Workgroup, The Bar’s Committee to Study the Decline in Jury Trials, and just completed six years of service as a member of The Florida Bar Journal and Florida Bar News Editorial Board. In the not too distant past, Professor Fingerhut has served as Chair of The Florida Bar Criminal Procedure Rules Committee, President of the Miami Chapter of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (FACDL-Miami), Director-at-Large and Chapter Representative of FACDL Statewide, Dade County Bar Association Criminal Court Committee Chair, Vice President of Friends of the Miami-Dade Drug Court, and Dade County Bar Designee to Miami-Dade County Mayor’s Mental Health Task Force.

Professor Fingerhut is the recipient of numerous awards, including the “Put Something Back” Pro Bono Award (from the Dade County Bar), the Daniel S. Pearson-Harry W. Prebish Founders Award (from FACDL-Miami), and the Steven M. Goldstein Criminal Justice Award (from FACDL Statewide), and is consistently named among the region’s top criminal defense lawyers – including The Best Lawyers in America.

Closest to his heart, though, are his law students, who have named him Professor of the Year twice, recipient of the Pioneer Award, and Commencement Hooder four times, in the past five years.

Recent Appointments:

Florida Innocence Commission (appointed by the Chief Justice of the Florida Supreme Court)

Florida Supreme Court Post-Conviction Relief Workgroup (appointed by the Chief Justice of the Florida Supreme Court)

Committee to Study the Decline in Jury Trials (appointed by the President of The Florida Bar)

Recent Publications:

Co-author (book), Robert S. Reiff’s Drunk Driving and Related Vehicular Offenses (LexisNexis Law Publishing, 5th Edition)

Co-author (book chapter), ”Conflict of Interest and Other Pitfalls for the Expert Witness,” as published in the Handbook of Forensic Neuropsychology (Springer Publishing Company, 2nd Edition)

Recent Presentations:

Florida Bar Program Chair and CLE Lecturer, 2011 Florida Criminal Law Update

Florida Bar CLE Lecturer, The Impact of Criminal Pleas on the Licensure of Health Care Practitioners

Lecturer at theMiami-Dade County New Prosecutor Training Course, The Elephant and the Modified Adversary System: On Ethics, Civility, Professionalism, The Present Moment, and the Importance of Being the Public Prosecutor

Recent Litigation:

United States v. Shaygan (regarding government’s appeal of a $600,000 Hyde Amendment defense award for prosecutorial misconduct, as amicus for the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers)

Campa, et al. v. United States (regarding remand for resentencing based on an incorrect application of the “gathering or transmitting top secret information” enhancement provision of the sentencing guidelines, as amicus co-author for the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers – Miami Chapter)

In re: Amendments to the Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure (regarding the proposal to change the order of closing argument in criminal cases, on behalf of the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida, the Florida Public Defender Association, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers – Miami Chapter, the Florida Innocence Initiative, and the Wilkie D. Ferguson, Jr. Bar Association)