Jake Tapper Retweeted Johanna Feis #MSDStrong

Johanna Feis #MSDStrong‏ @FeisJohanna

Today the Husband of Lori Levinson screamed at me,while I was speaking to a voter.He said I am not emotionally stable enough to speak about a candidate because my brother was just murdered!Which his wife could’ve prevented.

Levinson is one of the members of the Broward County School Board facing challengers — more here:,amp.html …


Neil H. Levinson is a shareholder at the law firm of Becker & Poliakoff in Fort Lauderdale and the husband of Laurie Rich Levinson, an incumbent BCSB member.  Levinson is being challenged by Richard Mendelson, an educator and Ph.D..  Mendelson was a long time, close friend of Aaron Feiss, the coach and security guard at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, who was killed while shielding students. Our law firm is honored to represent Johanna Feis and several members of her family.

Johanna was at a public polling place talking to voters and passing out flyers for Mendelson when Levinson started screaming at her.  Levinson's attack on Johanna is both shocking and alarming.  Is this how the husband of a BCSB member acts in public towards his wife's opponent's supporters?  Moreover, is this the way a LAWYER in the state of Florida should be permitted to act at any time?

One only needs to read Florida Chapter 104 to know that it is illegal to interfere with the voting process in the state of Florida.  That interference includes being menacing or threatening, either directly or indirectly towards voters or potential voters.  What would prompt a prominent attorney to risk his bar card and potential arrest to harass, embarrass and attempt to discredit the sister of one of the Parkland shooter's victims?  How sick is that?

Indeed every voter in District 6 of the Broward School District should be asking that question.  Why is Neil Levinson so violatile?  Does his law firm, Becker & Poliakoff, make big bucks from School Board legal service contracts?  Is he worried about his future?  Or is Neil Levinson so concerned about his wife's prior activities as a School Board Member being exposed if she loses that he would stoop to this level to stop her opponent and his supporters?  Why the desperation?

I don't know the answer to these questions.  Yet.  But I hope some really smart reporter or perhaps even a whistleblower will come forward and enlighten us.  Because the one thing I do know is that when it comes to the Broward School Board and its members and executive management, NOTHING is ever as it seems.

I guess it will be interesting to see if Levinson is prosecuted for his conduct by Davie police who were called to the scene.  I think Aaron Feiss would have liked that.  May he rest in peace. 



This is not a political message.  Just like I am color blind, I am also apolitical.  I don't care if you are a Democrat, a Republican or an Independent, politics are irrelevant when it comes to school safety AND when it comes to accountability for the Feb. 2018 Parkland massacre.

Because I am color blind, I don't see that School Board leader Runcie is black, just like I don't see that Sheriff Israel is white. I don't care if they both are purple or blue.  I hold them both equally accountable for that fateful day when we lost 17 precious people at MSD and many others were injured.  I also hold ALL of the current School Board members accountable for this tragedy.  Anyone and everyone who could have prevented this tragedy failed.  That has become pretty obvious pretty quickly.

But to make matters worse, Broward schools start again this week and I don't think they are any safer now than they were on February 13, 2018.  In fact, I think they are more dangerous now because it has become crystal clear that there are no security systems (or people) in place that adequately protect our students or teachers STILL.

Israel and Runcie are cut from the same cloth.  They are brothers from another mother.  They both make political decisions to protect themselves and their cronies that adversely impact the very people they are charged with the responsibility of protecting. Runcie and Israel cut deals to "pay back" their supporters with lucrative positions in their organizations and the award of pricey contracts to outside "consultants" who are people who will gladly do their dirty work for them. Both of these men are incompetent, corrupt, unethical and useless. They both need to be fired and then charged with neglect of duty and public corruption.  They reaped the rewards of living on the public payroll while not performing their responsibilities and now it is time for them to pay for that.  They both should be sitting in a cell beside Nikolas Cruz.  They created him.

Then let's talk about the poor Broward teachers.  Represented by BTU (which really stands for Bully, Threaten and Undermine not Broward Teacher's Union), the teachers have received no support from BTU. They have been threatened if they speak out about the atrocities of the School District and School administrators.   The teachers at MSD received no help, counseling or assistance with coping with the MSD shooting.  That is just wrong. But no one at the School District cares. Everyone in executive administration at BTU should also be held accountable and fired.  You can't represent the interest of the teachers in Broward County when you silence them, prohibit any teachers from receiving the help they desperately need, and bully anyone who stands up for them.

I urge the residents of Broward County to vote against any incumbent school board member.  Candidates like Richard Mendelson who actually have the experience and education to make reasoned decisions concerning school safety, safety procedures, personnel changes and a much needed cultural shift away from the priority of political considerations to the priority of hardening our schools and treating our teachers ethically and fairly need to be in office NOW.


Lerman Law Firm Expands Nationwide Investor Alert Concerning Financial Fraud Investigation of Hawk Systems, Inc. and Affiliated Companies to include William Baumner IV and Buckman, Buckman, & Reid

August 08, 2018 09:00 ET | Source: Lerman Law Firm:

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., Aug. 08, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Lerman Law Firm (Cathy Jackson Lerman, P.A.) today is issuing a nationwide Investor Alert warning investors of a potential financial fraud involving their purchase of Hawk Systems, Inc. stock or any of its affiliated companies named herein. The scope of this investigation and investor warning include former investment broker, William Baumner IV, and investment firm, Buckman, Buckman & Reid of Boca Raton.

The Lerman Firm has already gathered information from whistleblowers and victims related to Hawk Biometric Technologies, Inc. and other affiliated companies including Hawk Biometric Technologies, Inc., Hawk Biometrics of Canada, Inc., Fist Enterprises, LLC, Auto Secure, Inc., Auto Secure USA, Inc., and Secure Start USA, LLC as well as individuals including Alan Aronson, a Florida resident.

Investors in Hawk or the other various Hawk-related companies are encouraged to contact the Lerman Law Firm  to aid in the investigation into potential investor fraud involving the Hawk companies and certain investment brokers and firms.  Multiple newspaper articles and op-eds about Hawk allege that the company was a scam designed to trick investors into putting their savings into a company which ultimately declared tens of millions in losses, reportedly distributed investor funds among its leaders, and never even produced a saleable product.

If you are an investor/victim of one or more of the companies listed in this alert, wish to provide information to assist the Lerman Law Firm in its investigation, or are a potential whistleblower, then please contact Cathy Lerman, Esq. at or (954) 332-1143.

Data and Privacy Protection-What Every Business Needs to Know

First, you don't need to know all of the laws on data and privacy protection.  There are too many and they are too complex.  But as a business owner or operator you need to make sure that your business has an ongoing process that protects personally identifiable information and also guards against data breaches. 

If you do business internationally in the EU, you need to comply with GDPR which we have discussed previously.  If you are publicly traded, you need to company with SOX and if you are in healthcare, you need to comply with HIPAA.  These are just examples of some of the major regulations governing privacy protections, not an exhaustive list.

Every business needs to know where its data is located and how to restrict access to it.  Every business should have a data catalog and map that shows where your databases exist, who has access to the various databases, information as to the data they contain, and the level of security applicable to that data.

Any sensitive data should be masked and encrypted to prevent data breaches and unauthorized access. This procedure should be followed for any new databases and the integrity of the system should be tested routinely to assure that the safeguards you have implemented are working.

Compliance audits should be done routinely to verify compliance with your data protection policies. Backups of all data should be created and maintained in case the unthinkable happens.

Make sure your employees understand the importance of data security to the business as well as the customers they serve. One data breach can be all it takes to tank an otherwise successful business.  Plan, assess, monitor and troubleshoot your data protection procedures-the viability of your business may depend on it.


Big Changes in Florida’s Medical Marijuana Industry

On Friday, Christian Bax submitted his resignation from the Office of Medical Marijuana Use, planning to leave by August 10th. Bax’s tenure was tumultuous, filled with litigation ranging from smoking marijuana to licensing issues. I often heard from patients that their wait for cards was excessively long, dispensaries were understocked, and many felt Bax was to blame. This change in leadership is great news. Deputy Director Courtney Coppola has been named the interim director. 

The agency is so bogged down in litigation that the state has allocated $13.3 million for legal fees, a new seed-to-sale tracking system, and new license application reviews. This should help expedite an already long and drawn out process, and law makers have taken note. Businesses interested in Medical Marijuana and those already in the application stages should start to see improvements within the next few months. 

The state announced it has enrolled over 100,000 patients in June, opening the door for four more licenses to grow and sell marijuana. However, the system is still imperfect leading to delays, issues with supplies at dispensaries, and the looming “smoking” litigation. 

In other news,  3 Boys Farms sells to CannaCure/Scythian. The Canadian company will buy 60% of the shares before the end of August, with an option to acquire the rest of the company by the end of the year. The marijuana industry on a global scale is extremely lucrative, and our firm is keeping tabs on the mergers and acquisitions occurring internationally. 


Lerman Law Firm Praises Op-Ed for Helping Expose Ongoing Fraud by Hawk Systems, Inc. and Continued Inaction by Florida Law Enforcement

July 31, 2018 10:00 ET | Source: Lerman Law Firm

FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla., July 31, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Lerman Law Firm (Cathy Jackson Lerman, P.A.) today praised the op-ed “Something Is Rotten in the State of Florida” for exposing fraud by Hawk Systems, Inc. and its affiliated companies as outlined in the shareholder derivative action filed against multiple parties in Palm Beach County Circuit Court by a former Hawk director who uncovered the fraud.

The article details the multimillion-dollar Hawk scheme, raising questions about Florida and Federal law enforcement agencies’ failure to investigate and prosecute the perpetrators, who took millions from investors, diverting it for their personal use. 

“This article highlights serious wrongdoing by Hawk Systems, Inc., and affiliated companies who have other names, but sell the same lies and harm victims by their financial fraud,” said Cathy Lerman, Esq., Lerman Law Firm principal.

Lerman added: “This article summarizes shocking details from investigative articles by outlets including The New York Daily News, Miami Herald, and Palm Beach Post. Why, despite the overwhelming preponderance of evidence, have the FBI, IRS, SEC, Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg and Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw failed to shut down the scheme or arrest those perpetrating the fraud?  This is especially true given that the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office concluded in its official report that Hawk was ‘an organized scheme to defraud.’”

The Lerman Law Firm has been investigating Hawk and gathering information from whistleblowers and victims. As alleged in the shareholder derivative action filed against multiple defendants, including former Hawk officers and directors, the scheme was designed to trick investors – from professional athletes to elderly citizens – into putting their savings into a company that openly declared $22 million in losses to the SEC while only claiming $5,570 in sales.

The Hawk investment fraud reportedly spans at least 13 states and involves affiliated companies including Hawk Biometric Technologies, Inc., Hawk Biometrics of Canada, Inc., Auto Secure, Inc., Auto Secure USA, Inc., Secure Start USA, LLC and Fist Enterprises, LLC according to litigation filed against those companies and their principals.

If you are an investor in one or more of the above-mentioned companies and wish to provide information to assist the Lerman Law Firm in its investigation, contact Cathy Lerman at or (954) 332-1143.

The Four Most Important Legal Terms in Your Business Contract

Frequently we are retained to assist business owners in resolving contractual disputes.  Just as frequently, the dispute centers around a contract that never received any type of legal review and therefore has many loopholes, missing terms, and sometimes the contractual terms actually conflict with each other. Our recommendation is always if a deal is important enough to document in a contract, then the written document is important enough to be reviewed by a lawyer.  Today I want to address the four most important legal terms in your business contract.

The first is that the contract provide for the controlling law that will govern interpretation of the contract terms.  In other words, the contract should provide that the interpretation and resolution of any issues regarding its terms be governed by a specified state's laws.  Usually the contract provides that the state of incorporation of the business or the state where the primary location of business operations  is located controls.  It is important to specify the controlling law or you could end up litigating your Florida company's claim based upon Iowa law which is not a good place to be.

Secondly, the contract needs to specify the state, including the county where applicable, where any disputes including litigation must be resolved.  If you do not provide this term in the contract then the parties are free to sue wherever they desire.  So while you may expect to litigate any contractual disputes in Florida, the other party to the contract may expect to file suit and litigate in the state where their company is domiciled which might be California.  Obviously, the issue of situs of litigation also brings up cost factors which need to be considered but it is always preferable to litigate where your business office is located and/or where the owner or owners reside.

Third, the contract needs to specify the length of the contract and how and when the contract can be terminated.  We see contracts all the time that are what is known as "evergreen" contracts meaning they have no end.  Often that same contract does not specify any way to terminate the contract regardless of whether the contract is breached by the other party or the parties simply want to end the arrangement.  This creates quite a problem particularly when one party breaches the contract and the other party wants to terminate. However, if the contract has no termination provisions, how do you do that?  We have dealt with that dilemma many times.

Finally, the contract should have provisions that address what the procedure is for modifying a contract.  No one can predict the future and many times contracts need to be modified to address a changing business environment, a change in the law that impacts the contract or a change in the business needs of the parties.  The procedure by which such changes may be mutually agreed to by the parties is definitely a necessity and should be clearly spelled out.

The Lerman Law Firm strongly recommends that business owners have all contracts reviewed by a lawyer before execution.  It can save a lot of time, money and headaches for everyone involved.

Navigating the Complex Regulatory Environment of Medical Marijuana in Florida

As states continue to legalize medicinal and recreational marijuana, businesses, patients, and law makers are left to determine the ins and outs of state based legalization. Congress has begun to show interest in tackling this issue at the federal level with legislation such as the Medical Cannabis Research Act of 2018, and the Senate Farm Bill. However, nothing has been signed into law, so we are relying on memos and DEA Internal Directives to guide stakeholders on regulatory activities.

The State of Florida has legalized medicinal cannabis for patients that suffer from a variety of conditions and illnesses. However, not all patients who qualify for a medical marijuana card are obtaining them, some are looking at CBD and hemp products to help treat their ailments. The regulatory environment for marijuana and hemp based products is complicated, so having someone to help you wade through state and federal law is important.

Marijuana is still illegal on the federal level, but enforcement of the regulations guiding Florida marijuana companies will likely come from state agencies. In December 2017, the state of Colorado shut down 26 legal pot businesses for violating the selling limits for customers. At the beginning of 2018, California warned almost 500 businesses that their marijuana operations were illegal.

Physicians who can issue patients a prescription for medical marijuana must successfully complete a 2-hour course and subsequent examination offered by the Florida Medical Association or the Florida Osteopathic Medical Association. An important provision in Florida’s medical marijuana law states that a qualified physician may not be employed by, or have any direct or indirect economic interest in, a medical marijuana treatment center or marijuana testing laboratory (FL Statute 381.986 (3)(b)). Statute 381.986 (3)(b) has the potential to create a regulatory nightmare for physicians and physician groups who are in violation of the law.

In addition to physicians having rigorous regulatory guidelines, Marijuana Treatment Centers have extremely specific policies to abide by. Failure to regularly audit and monitor compliance with state regulations will leave your business open to enforcement actions. The regulations permit a statewide maximum of 25 dispensing facilities, with an increase of 5 more facilities per 100,000 registered patients.  There are also regional requirements that Marijuana Treatment Centers must adhere to. Groups may sell their dispensary slots and there are reporting guidelines that companies must follow. It is critical to have legal counsel review all contracts before engaging in the sale of a dispensary slot, and the proper compliance systems in place to accurately report the transaction.

The cultivation of medicinal cannabis to the sale of products to patients requires the use of a seed to sale tracking system that will eventually will be established and maintained by the state. Florida law also details strict rules involving the cultivation of medical marijuana and contracting with third parties for various business needs, such as lease agreements, hiring employees, transfer of ownership, security equipment, etc.

The most important action businesses in the medical marijuana industry can take is creating a solid compliance plan that will regulate all aspects of the business. Our firm is able to provide cost-effective plans to help facilitate the proper systems to abide by Florida law and ensure that employees are following the guidelines.

If you need assistance with Florida regulatory issues related to medical marijuana, contact Candace Lerman, Esq. , Of Counsel to the Lerman Law Firm, for assistance via email: or Cathy Lerman via email at

Why Every Company Needs to Read the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018

Recently, California Assembly Bill 375 ( AB 375) which is known as the California Consumer Privacy Act was enacted in California in a expedited political process. If your company is in Iowa, you may wonder why we would encourage you to familiarize yourself with a law that was just enacted in California and, in fact, does not go into effect until January 1, 2020.

Well, because we believe the California Consumer Privacy Act ("CCPA") is just the beginning of a movement by consumer privacy protectionists to change the way consumer information and data is collected, maintained, used, stored and monetized by businesses throughout the United States.  On many levels, the CCPA is a very watered down version of the General Data Protection Regulation ("GDPR") which went into effect on May 25, 2018 in the European Union (including the UK).

The GDPR requires businesses to protect the personal information and privacy of EU citizens.  It is beyond the scope of this blog post to delineate all of its provisions but suffice it to say that GDPR is as onerous in scope as it is aggressive in enforcement tools. GDPR expands the definition of what one commonly considers personal identification information and requires a "reasonable" level of protection by businesses for this information.  However, it remains to be seen what is "reasonable." GDPR, like CCPA, was enacted to address the increasing concern and lack of trust by consumers that their personal data is being properly stored and protected by businesses and their fear that their date is being resold by those same businesses. While GDPR and CCPA do not mirror each other in terms of compliance requirements or consumer consent (and actually conflict in some provisions), both laws seek to curb the use of consumer's personal information by businesses and to put the control of that use in the hands of the consumer.

CCPA is a "heads up" to businesses across America that deal with and maintain consumer data which is virtually all businesses, large and small. CCPA gives consumers the right to know what information is being collected about them, what the source of that information is, what their information is being used for, whether their information is being used or sold to third parties, and who their information is disclosed to.

Importantly, CCPA gives the consumer the right to "opt out" of permitting businesses to use or sell their personal information to third parties or the consumer can require the business to delete their personal information. And those are just a few of its unique provisions.

We believe CCPA is just the beginning of a wave of new laws and regulations that will be implemented in many states and perhaps at the national level to address the increasingly loud complaints of consumers about privacy concerns about their personal data.  Along with laws like CCPA come increased compliance responsibilities, increased compliance costs, operational changes in the way businesses obtain, use and store data as well as the potential threat of litigation arising from same.

Please contact the Lerman Law Firm if we can be of assistance to you in addressing compliance with the ever changing landscape of compliance with data protection and  privacy laws.





"Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."  John 8:32

Finally, the Broward Teacher's Union (BTU) played its political hand on the Broward County School Board race and the truth has been revealed.  And folks, BTU has proven once again IT IS ALL ABOUT POLITICS IN THE BROWARD COUNTY SCHOOL SYSTEM.  BTU refused to endorse any candidate with ties to Stoneman Douglas, according to a Sun-Sentinel news report, and endorsed most school board candidate incumbents.

How is that possible? Why isn't BTU supporting any candidate that will make our schools safer, raise our teacher's salaries, require transparency from the top down by the Broward County School Board, and hold administrators in Broward schools accountable for their own malfeasance and nonfeasance?  The simple answer which has been true in every school board race for decades in Broward-POLITICS.

However, BTU's strategy has backfired. It is too obvious. BTU emphasizes the "Proven Record" of the Broward County School Board member encumbents being challenged in the current race as the basis for their continued support of these encumbents.  "Proven Record" of what you ask?  Well, that is easy. 

Everyone in Broward County has had a front row seat, since the MSD tragedy, to the parade of stories of corruption, cover ups, incompetence, inadequate security, unsafe buildings, accounting irregularities, and just plain old fraud that has plagued the BCSB for years.  Yet BTU supports the incumbents AGAIN????? Every teacher, student and parent of students in the Broward County school system should be furious and afraid because if all of these encumbents get elected again-NOTHING IS GOING TO CHANGE IN THE BROWARD COUNTY SCHOOL SYSTEM ("BCSS").

It is time that the truth set Broward voters free to vote for candidates who actually will make a difference and CHANGE THE WAY BCSS operates. For example, Laurie Rich Levinson has been a school board member for 8 years.  She is being challenged by newcomer, Richard A. Mendelson, Ph.D. 

Mendelson is the only candidate for BCSB (and is more qualified than any sitting member of the BCSB) that has any qualifications to lead the major overhaul that the School Board requires.  There is no other candidate with experience in the Broward County School System as a teacher as well as expertise in industrial and organizational psychology and security. 

Mendelson is running on a platform to create positive change in our schools and community as well as fight for fair pay for teachers, accountability at all levels of the school district., and to make safety and security of our schools a priority. How could BTU ignore a candidate with this kind of stellar credentials? What, exactly, has Levinson done to facilitate those goals in the last 8 years that she has "sat" on the School Board?  The answer will not surprise you.

Levinson's political clout is what has kept her in her "seat"-not her performance as an aggressive advocate for students, teachers, transparency of the school district, and/or elimination of corruption at all levels of BCSS.  Levinson's mother is Nan Rich, a Broward County Commissioner and prominent political figure.  BTU doesn't want to upset a politically powerful  county commissioner by supporting her daughter's rival-regardless of whether it is the right thing to do for the community, the schools, the students, their families, and the teachers. So folks, there is the sad truth.

Now knowing this truth, all voters in Broward County should cast a suspicious eye on all of the School Board incumbents who are running for re-election.  Furthermore, students, educators and parents in Broward County should feel FREE to speak out against the position of BTU and their political cronies who have placed politics over the safety, security, ethics, morality and legality of the administration and operation of our school system.  Politics should play no part in the education of our children, regardless of whether it concerns their safety on campus or the creation of ill-advised programs that hide the dangers lurking within our schools. 

The truth about BTU is irrefutable. Now my friends and neighbors in Broward County:





Brother of Slain Parkland Hero Gives Exclusive Interview to CBS News 4 Miami

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

  • Ray Feis - brother of Aaron Feis, the coach who died shielding students during the February 14 mass shooting at Parkland’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School – gave his first interview since the incident to CBS 4 Miami on Monday. Feis praised the actions of his brother and fellow coaches who were killed protecting students, called for resignations in school and police leadership, and criticized the lack of action by organizations previously alerted to the shooter’s concerning behavior.

PARKLAND, Fla. (PRWEB) June 27, 2018

Ray Feis, brother of the late Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School coach and celebrated hero Aaron Feis, spoke out in his first interview on Monday. Feis sat down with anchor Rudabeh Shahbazi of CBS News 4 Miami for the exclusive, where he applauded the actions of Feis and other coaches who died defending students, criticized organizations who took no action when alerted to prior actions of the shooter, and called for significant changes in the Broward County School System.

Describing Aaron as his own "protector" and a "father figure," and a caring mentor who made sure students had lunch and even bought them shoes when needed, Feis said he was not surprised that his brother rushed to shield students during the mass shooting on February 14, 2018, even though it meant losing his own life. Aaron Feis, along with fellow coaches Chris Hixon and Scott Biegel, died while trying to stop the shooter, a former student. In all, 17 people were killed in the massacre and many more injured. Feis stated that on the day of the shooting, Aaron, as well as Hixon and Biegel, did what they did every day - make sure the kids were safe.

Ray Feis pointed out that the shooter, "an individual with documented mental health issues," had multiple encounters with law enforcement, administrators and others, while exhibiting violent, anti-social and bizarre behavior, but he "just kept getting passed over." Feis criticized the multiple agencies which had previously been made aware of these issues and noted that "no one wanted to do the right thing."

In the interview, Feis advocated that more attention should be focused on students with mental health issues in the Broward County Public School System, "so other potential shooters do not slip through the cracks." He also told Shahbazi that Aaron, among others, had repeatedly tried to get help for the shooter, but that "the teachers and staff don't have the amount of backing that they actually need."

Feis ultimately points to a failure in leadership as the reason for the systematic breakdowns that resulted in Aaron and 16 others being killed at Stoneman Douglas. Feis has called for Broward County Superintendent Robert Runcie, as well as Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel, to step down while their departments are being investigated.

Feis has publicly endorsed Broward County School Board candidate Richard Mendelson, who was one of Aaron's best friends. Feis believes Mendelson is the best person for the job, due to his background in security, PhD in Industrial and Organizational Psychology and extensive experience as a coach and educator at Stoneman Douglas High School.

Mendelson has become a symbol of change in the Broward County School Board race. His platform emphasizes school safety, hardening of schools, fair pay for teachers, and accountability - all of which Ray Feis believes are now lacking.

For more information on School Board Candidate Richard A. Mendelson, Ph.D., please visit:



It has been the privilege of this law firm to represent and assist some of the victims' families of the MSD shooting. I have been amazed at their resilience and that of the surviving students. I have never witnessed such human courage and strength, particularly by those so young.   However, I have been angered by the lack of answers, information and investigative conclusions that should have been disclosed by now to these families, to the MSD students, to the people of Broward County, to the people of the state of Florida, and to the people across our nation who have supported these victims and their families.

Today Broward School Superintendent Robert Runcie fired two BCSD security guards who did nothing during the MSD shooting except hide. Too little, too late is not strong enough to describe Runcie's inept actions. BCSD has protected these security guards (and others) for the last almost 5 months. Are these two security guards supposed to be the sacrificial lambs or diversionary strategy, like BSO Deputy Scott Peterson was for law enforcement, for all of the sins of the Broward County School Board and District?  I think not.

Don't get me wrong.  Peterson should have been fired not retired.  These two security guards deserve to be fired. All law enforcement officers and security guards who protected themselves instead of the victims should also face criminal charges, where appropriate.

But my most pressing question is when are the people who make the final decisions (and provide such "amazing leadership" ) going to be held accountable?  Why was BSO Deputy Scott Peterson permitted to resign instead of being fired?  Why haven't any law enforcement officers (either from BSO or from other agencies) who hid instead of going in to shoot the shooter at MSD (as they are required to do) been fired?

Most importantly, why haven't Robert Runcie and Scott Israel been removed from office?  The underlying criminal case is not complicated. It is the series of acts by multiple people at every level of government of enormous ineptitude, incompetence, cowardice, corruption, conspiracy, perjury, greed, malfeasance, nonfeasance, dereliction of duty, and outright fraud that created the perfect storm for this horrific act to be consummated.  For these reasons, the leaders, the cowards, the corrupt, and ALL of their accomplices need to pay the price for this senseless loss of life and injury to innocent victims and their families.

I am calling on the students of MSD, their parents, our political leaders, and the people of our community to demand and insist upon the disclosure of the truth and full transparency as to what really happened on February 14, 2018 at MSD and hold accountable EVERYONE AT EVERY LEVEL OF GOVERNMENT OR PUBLIC SERVICE who was involved and contributed to this travesty.  Enough of the gamesmanship, diversionary tactics and political rhetoric! 

This is not a political issue, it is a human issue.  We all need to speak up on behalf of those who cannot speak and insist on accountability at all levels.  NOW!



Ray Feis, younger brother of the late Aaron Feis, a coach and security guard at Stoneman Douglas High School who was killed in a school shooting on February 14, 2018 sat down in an exclusive interview with CBS4 Miami reporter Rudabeh Shahbazi found here:    

Mendelson Endorsed for Broward County School Board District 6


Brother of Slain Parkland Shooting Hero Aaron Feis Endorses Dr. Richard Mendelson for Broward County School Board

Broward County School Board District 6 candidate Dr. Richard Mendelson today received the endorsement of Ray Feis, brother of high school coach Aaron Feis, who was slain while protecting students during the Parkland shooting. Dr. Mendelson has pledged to improve the educational environment for students and teachers.

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (PRWEB) May 11, 2018

Just weeks after announcing his campaign to serve District 6 on the Broward County School Board, Dr. Richard Mendelson today received the endorsement of his candidacy by Ray Feis, brother of the late high school coach Aaron Feis. Coach Feis died heroically after using his own body to shield students during the mass shooting that occurred at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in which 17 were killed and many more injured.

"Richard has always been a passionate advocate for our local schools and was a close friend of my brother Aaron,” said Ray Feis. “I'm proud to endorse Richard’s candidacy for the Broward School Board because I know he will be a champion for positive change in our community. I strongly support his pledged commitment to working for fair pay for our teachers, requiring more accountability in the school district, and making changes in public school safety to better protect our schools, students, teachers and administrators.”

“Our family, and many others in this community, suffered terribly as a result of the Parkland shooting but I will not allow Aaron’s death to be in vain. Richard is well equipped to be the catalyst of critical changes we need in the Broward School District. As a life-long educator and former teacher for 13 years at Marjory Stoneman Douglas, there is nobody more qualified to serve as a Broward County School Board Member and leader in our community than Richard Mendelson” said Feis.

For his part, Mendelson said today that he was “honored to have the support of Ray Feis, and I pledge as a member of the Broward County School Board to tirelessly create a safe, fulfilling educational environment for our students and teachers as well as implement aggressive policies and procedures to require accountability at all levels of the school district.”

He added: “As a second-generation Broward County Public School educator and a graduate of the Broward School system, I have deep roots in this District and in this community. In the tragic Parkland attack, I lost a close friend in Aaron Feis, who was like a brother to me. I feel compelled to step forward and utilize my knowledge and experience as an educator and an expert in industrial and organizational psychology to facilitate the necessary critical changes to our school system at every level.”

“The time has come to aggressively revamp our district operations, administration, finance and culture. I am eager to be part of this process and to work with the other School Board members to effect these changes as quickly as possible” said Mendelson.

For more information on School Board Candidate Richard A. Mendelson, Ph.D., please visit:

Lerman Law Firm Announces Creation of Trust Fund for Daughter of Parkland Hero Aaron Feis

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

 On behalf of the family of the late Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Coach Aaron Feis, the Lerman Law Firm is pleased to announce the creation of the Arielle Feis Irrevocable Trust Fund to provide for Feis' beloved daughter.


The Lerman Law Firm (Cathy Jackson Lerman, P.A.) is pleased to announce, on behalf of the mother and siblings of the late Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Coach Aaron Feis, the creation of the Arielle Feis Irrevocable Trust Fund. This trust fund has been set up to accept donations in honor of Aaron Feis and to continue his legacy by assuring that the needs of his young daughter Arielle Feis are met.

On February 14, 2018, Coach Feis shielded students from harm at the high school in Parkland, Florida during a mass shooting by a former student, which took 17 lives including Feis', and injured many others. Coach Feis has been widely lauded as a hero for his courageous actions. The Feis family wishes to express their gratitude for the outpouring of love and support from people all over the country as a result of Aaron's death.

"It is truly a privilege to assist the Feis family in protecting and supporting Aaron's precious daughter," said attorney Cathy Lerman. "Our country, our state and our community have lost a great leader and a great man. Aaron lived his life the same way he died - protecting and serving our community. My heart breaks for this family and the families of all of the victims of this senseless shooting."

Donations in Coach Aaron Feis' honor can be made payable to the "Arielle Feis Irrevocable Trust Fund," care of J.P. Morgan Chase, and sent to: J.P. Morgan Chase, Attn: JPMS LOCKBOX 21002, Arielle Feis Irrevocable Trust Fund,4 Chase Metrotech Center, 7th floor East Brooklyn, NY 11245.

"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." - John 15:13



Investor Alert: Lerman Law Firm Announces Investigation of Hawk Systems, Inc. and Subsidiary and Affiliate Companies  

Companies Being Investigated Include Hawk Systems, Inc., Hawk Biometric Technologies, Inc., Hawk Biometrics of Canada, Inc., Fist Enterprises, LLC, Auto Secure, Inc., Auto Secure USA, Inc., and Secure Start USA, LLC

February 14, 2018 11:58 ET | Source: Lerman Law Firm

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., Feb. 14, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- On the heels of a detailed exposé in the New York Daily News by reporter Larry McShane entitled “Wall Street trader, NFL players hit hard by ‘untouchable’ $4M mob-linked scheme” about the fraudulent schemes of penny stock company HAWK SYSTEMS, INC (“HAWK”), trading under the symbol HWSY, the Lerman Law Firm (Cathy Jackson Lerman, P.A.), has initiated an investigation into the activities of HAWK and its subsidiaries and affiliated companies. All companies are headquartered in Palm Beach County, Florida and include: Hawk Biometric Technologies, Inc., Hawk Biometrics of Canada, Inc., FIST Enterprises, LLC, Auto Secure, Inc., Auto Secure USA, Inc. and Secure Start USA, LLC.

The Lerman Law Firm is investigating information published in the New York Daily News’ article surrounding a biometric fingerprint identification device patent that HAWK purportedly owned, which was allegedly nothing but a scam to entice unwitting investors, including the elderly, into investing their hard-earned money and even life savings in HAWK. McShane’s article states that “there was no production, no product, no patent” and that HAWK had losses of $22 million and while only reporting an alleged $5570 in sales. Investor proceeds were said to have gone to pay for the lavish lifestyles of top HAWK executives and not into HAWK to actually produce a saleable product.

This article has raised vital questions as to why HAWK is still trading and how the alleged scam is continuing through the Hawk-affiliated companies. The Lerman Law Firm is investigating whether other investors have fallen victim to the same “patent” scam through these companies.

“One of the elderly HAWK victims stated that the principals behind HAWK, who perpetrated the initial scam, are ‘untouchable.’ That is a sad, but not surprising, statement about law enforcement and regulatory agencies in Florida,” stated Cathy Lerman, principal of the Lerman Law Firm. “We intend to get to the truth about the operation of these companies and help any other victims/investors obtain justice. No one is or should be above the law.”

If you are an investor in one or more of the named companies, wish to provide information to assist the Lerman Law Firm in its investigation, or are a potential whistleblower, please contact Cathy Lerman at  or (954) 332-1143.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Colin Kaepernick-Warriors for Justice?

My favorite quote from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”  Dr. King led a civil rights movement emphasizing nonviolent protests to draw attention to the plight of African-American citizens and the atrocities committed against them due to racial discrimination.

I wonder what Dr. King would say about Colin Kaepernick and his NFL brethren who "took a knee" during NFL games. What many saw as a disrespectful gesture by Colin and others towards our country, our military and our flag could easily also have been interpreted as Colin's nonviolent gesture to draw attention to the plight of African-Americans who have wrongfully suffered and died at the hands of law enforcement who were steeped in racism and hate. Colin has stated that he did not mean any disrespect to the country, our military or our flag, the "take a knee" was his way, on a national stage, to draw attention to the plight of his African-American brothers and sisters who suffered at the hands of racial discrimination and who lacked a voice. I believe him.  

What I found more troubling than Colin's "taking a knee" was the outpouring of hate, violence and racial tension caused by those who were offended by Colin's actions.  What Colin actually proved, albeit unintentionally, is that racism is alive and well in this country.  I have to admit I was shocked at the horrific, racially- motivated statements of hate and threats on You Tube videos, press statements, tweets and news coverage of protests by white Americans against blacks and those who support them-particularly those who supported Colin.

Now I have been a lawyer in Florida for over 30 years.  I am not naive and I am not blind. I know racial discrimination still exists in this country in law enforcement, both internally and externally, in business and even in law.  I also know that corruption exists in law enforcement agencies across the U.S., some in my own backyard and that this corruption aids those who use the badge as a shield against being held accountable. 

I agree with Dr. King-racial discrimination, sexual harassment and discrimination, corruption, and violation of civil rights hurts all of us- not just those who are the victims. So I would answer my own question above with a resounding YES!  I do believe that Dr. King and Colin are warriors for justice.  And so am I and many of my fellow lawyers who fight for equality and against corruption.

Lest you think my views are myopic I need to disclose something else.  I come from a family of law enforcement officers, some of which also served in the military.  I know what it is like to watch your spouse leave for work and not know if they will come home safely.  I know the long hours, thankless work, and stressful conditions under which the majority of men and women of law enforcement in this country go out every day and keep the rest of us safe -while putting their lives on the line.  I admire and respect them. 

However just like there are bad lawyers- there are also bad cops. No profession is immune from members with a lack of integrity or ethics. What Dr. King and Colin seek is what we all should want-equality as well as justice and accountability for all.  

So on this day honoring Dr. King and his tireless efforts to do just that, I ask all Americans to take a second look before they judge a nonviolent protester and their motivation.  Don't assume anything.  STOP, LOOK and LISTEN to one another and let's all work together to stop the hateful racial rhetoric, expose corruption and wrongdoing in government at whatever level it exists, and work together as color-blind "Warriors for Justice."   Cathy Lerman, The Lerman Law Firm, Fort Lauderdale, Florida



The Lerman Law Firm (Cathy Jackson Lerman, P.A.) announced today an investigation of the Kurt Barton Triton Financial Ponzi Scheme.  The Lerman Law Firm is investigating the use of IRA accounts through Equity Trust Company in Ohio to make investments in this Ponzi Scheme which had over 300 victims.  Witnesses or victims of the Ponzi scheme who have information on the use of these IRAs to invest in the Kurt Barton Triton Financial Ponzi Scheme are asked to contact attorney Cathy Lerman at 

The Lerman Law Firm is headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  Cathy Lerman, principal of the Lerman Law Firm, is a recognized legal expert in the investigation and exposure of Ponzi schemes and other fraudulent investment schemes.  Ms. Lerman has been responsible for exposing numerous Ponzi schemes nationwide involving thousands of victims and has worked with prosecutors across the country to apprehend and obtain convictions against these fraudsters.  The Lerman Law Firm remains available to assist victims of Ponzi schemes and fraudulent investment schemes nationwide.


The Lerman Law Firm (Cathy Jackson Lerman, P.A.) announced today an investigation of the Chris Cornett- Heidi Byer Forex Ponzi Scheme.  The Lerman Law Firm is investigating the use of IRA accounts through Equity Trust Company in Ohio to make investments in this Ponzi Scheme which had over 100 victims.  Witnesses or victims of the Ponzi scheme who have information on the use of these IRAs to invest in the Forex Ponzi Scheme are asked to contact attorney Cathy Lerman at

The Lerman Law Firm is headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  Cathy Lerman, principal of the Lerman Law Firm, is a recognized legal expert in the investigation and exposure of Ponzi schemes and other fraudulent investment schemes.  Ms. Lerman has been responsible for exposing numerous Ponzi schemes nationwide involving thousands of victims and has worked with prosecutors across the country to apprehend and obtain convictions against these fraudsters.  The Lerman Law Firm remains available to assist victims of Ponzi schemes and fraudulent investment schemes nationwide.



March 20, 2017 10:00 ET | Source: Lerman Law Firm

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., March 20, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- In the wake of a detailed news report by Jeff Ostrowski of The Palm Beach Post titled “NFL Players Stung By Losses in West Palm Beach Company,” concerning penny stock company Hawk Systems, Inc. (“Hawk Systems”), trading under the symbol HWSY, the Lerman Law Firm (Cathy Jackson Lerman, P.A.), has initiated an investigation into the activities of Hawk Systems and its subsidiary, Hawk Biometric Technologies, Inc. (“Hawk Biometric”). 

The Lerman Law Firm is investigating claims that NFL players who became investors in Hawk were used to “bait” the elderly to invest in the company. In addition, the Lerman Law Firm has learned that some investors may have unknowingly purchased shares of stock in Hawk Systems or Hawk Biometric, which were never authorized, and were illegally issued and sold.

According to a press release issued by Mark Spanakos, who is the named Plaintiff in a shareholder derivative suit filed against Hawk Systems and others in Palm Beach County, millions of shares of Hawk stock are still trading.  Yet Hawk never made a profit and incurred millions of dollars in net losses.   

“What is probably most shocking is that no one in the state of Florida, including the Attorney General Pam Bondi, law enforcement, the SEC, the IRS or the FBI has to date done anything to help these investors/victims.  We need to find out what happened to the millions of dollars of investor money, and determine if Hawk Systems or Hawk Biometric stock was illegally sold, or if elderly investors were illegally targeted,” stated Cathy Lerman, principal of the Lerman Law Firm.

If you currently own stock in Hawk Systems or Hawk Biometric and wish to obtain additional information about the investigation or wish to provide information to assist in the Lerman firm’s investigation, please contact Cathy Lerman via email at or by telephone at (954) 332-1143.


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