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State v. Crumbley

Florida Court of Appeals, Second District

May 23, 2018

STATE OF FLORIDA, Appellant,
v.
WILLIAM CRUMBLEY, Appellee. STATE OF FLORIDA, Appellant,
v.
TOSHA JO ROBBINS, Appellee.

         NOT FINAL UNTIL TIME EXPIRES TO FILE REHEARING MOTION AND, IF FILED, DETERMINED

          Appeals from the Circuit Court for Pasco County; Linda H. Babb, Judge.

          Pamela Jo Bondi, Attorney General, Tallahassee, and Dawn A. Tiffin, Assistant Attorney General, Tampa, for Appellant.

          A.R. Mander, III and Keeley R. Karatinos of Mander Law Group, Dade City, for Appellee William Crumbley.

          Christopher E. Cosden, Fort Myers, for Appellee Tosha Jo Robbins.

          LaROSE, Chief Judge.

         In this consolidated appeal, the State seeks review of the trial court's order dismissing the informations. We have jurisdiction. See Fla. R. App. P. 9.140(c)(1)(A). Section 458.3265, Florida Statutes (2010 and 2011), criminalizes the operation of a pain management clinic without a license. The trial court found the statute unconstitutionally vague. We reverse and remand for further proceedings.

         Background

         Harbour Medical Group was founded in 2009. Following an investigation, the Pasco County Sheriff's Office executed a search warrant for Harbour Medical in late 2011. A few months later, law enforcement officers arrested Dr. William Crumbley, a physician at Harbour Medical since its founding. They also arrested Tosha Jo Robbins, who had served as Harbour Medical's office manager for approximately two years.

         Each made incriminating statements. Dr. Crumbley's arrest affidavit reflects that he told a detective that "he knew he was participating in the operation [of] a pain management clinic without a license." Ms. Robbins' arrest affidavit indicates that she "admitted the Harbour Medical Group was acting as a pain management clinic, but denied knowing they had no license to act as such."

         The State charged Dr. Crumbley and Ms. Robbins, [1] in separate cases, with one count each of violating section 458.3265, [2] a third-degree felony. The charged conduct occurred "on or between" October 14, 2010, and December 13, 2011. Thus, the offenses implicate the 2010 version of the statute and the amended 2011 version. See ch. 2010-211, §§ 4, 14, at 2632-38, 2649, Laws of Fla. (making October 1, 2010, the effective date of section 458.3265); ch. 2011-141, §§ 4, 31, at 2198-2207, 2247, Laws of Fla. (amending section 458.3265 effective July 1, 2011).

         Dr. Crumbley and Ms. Robbins moved to dismiss the informations. They claimed that the 2010 and 2011 versions of section 458.3265 were unconstitutionally vague, both facially and as-applied. After hearing argument of counsel, the trial court granted the motions in a written order. The trial court took no testimony, received no evidence, and made no factual findings.

         The 2010 version of section 458.3265 required registration of "[a]ll privately owned pain-management clinics, facilities, or offices, hereinafter referred to as 'clinics, ' which advertise in any medium for any type of pain-management services, or employ a physician who is primarily engaged in the treatment of pain by prescribing or dispensing controlled substance medications." § 458.3265(1)(a), Fla. Stat. (2010).

         The trial court found this provision unconstitutionally vague because it failed to define the terms "primarily" and "pain." The trial court noted the "fact that physicians engage in the treatment of injuries and diseases . . . which involve some degree of pain." The trial court stressed that the provision lacked normative standards and "cast[] its net so broadly as to require doing an act in terms so vague that men and women of common ...


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