06/13/2024

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Sarah Boone (left) and her attorney Patricia Cashman in court on June 7, 2024. Boone's murder case has been rocky in part because of repeated friction with her own attorneys. (Screenshots: WOFL)

In middle of 7th attorney, murder defendant accused of letting boyfriend die in suitcase complains her current lawyer has ‘snotty attitude’

Sarah Boone (left) and her attorney Patricia Cashman in court on June 7, 2024. Boone’s murder case has been rocky in part because of repeated friction with her own attorneys. (Screenshots: WOFL)

Florida murder defendant Sarah Boone, 46, is in the middle of her seventh attorney for allegedly killing boyfriend Jose Torres Jr, 42,, and after the events of a court hearing on Friday, she could be on her way to her eighth.

“I feel she is untruthful with me and full-blown prejudiced against me, which I believe adds to her nasty attitude towards me, and I do not trust her,” she said of attorney Patricia Cashman, according to Orlando Fox affiliate WOFL. “Everyone constantly, constantly, constantly blames me that I am the reason why I am supposedly going on attorney number eight, which I am not the reason for any of them.”

She also said, “I have told her from day one that her snotty attitude was inappropriate, and I tried very hard to bear with her and her attitude.”

It was echoes of her friction with prior attorney, Frank J. Bankowitz.

“He is unprofessional, hides, lies and is disrespectful,” Boone wrote last year, also calling him a “dud of an attorney.”

Bankowitz was similarly fed up with his then-client:

3. The Defendant will not be satisfied with any attorney unless said attorney does not have a case load and can dedicate his or her time solely to Ms. Boone’s case.

5. The best possible avenue is to have the Defendant represent herself as no attorney can satisfy her.

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    Another attorney, Mauricio Padilla, withdrew in 2022, saying that he and his client had “irreconcilable differences” and their relationship became “adversarial.” Things got so bad, he said, that he could no longer give her “effective aid in the fair representation” of her defense.

    On Friday, Cashman described the attorney-client relationship as being at an “impasse.”

    “I know the court’s in a difficult position, but at this point, we’re at that impasse of, if she walks out of every conference that I have with her, I’m not sure what that says about the attorney-client relationship,” she said. “I’ve spent probably 20 hours – a little bit more, a little bit less with Ms. Boone. She has lots of lists, lots of questions.”

    In this case for second-degree murder, Boone is accused of fatally trapping Torres inside a suitcase and recording herself mocking him, and accusing him of choking her and cheating on her. She allegedly lied to investigators, telling them shifting stories about the day in question. The court has been constantly pushing back the trial date amid her lawyer trouble.

    To be sure, not all of her former attorneys cited animosity with the defendant. Boone has bounced back and forth because some of those lawyers had conflicts of interest. For example, the public defender’s office had represented Torres in a domestic violence case in which Boone was the victim. The Office of Regional Conflict Counsel had to back off because they previously represented a witness.

    On Friday, Judge Michael Kraynick set the trial date for Oct. 7, but said he will review Boone’s 58-page letter to the court.

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