A year ago we posted a warning about a lawyer from Texas, Teri Estes-Hightower, who was using the Florida Sex Offender’s registry to solicit people for a “class action” lawsuit in Florida against the registry. While this all sounded great to some who didn’t know better. Those with experience in registration matters and constitutional law saw this as a disaster. Her firm had filed a similar case in Texas that was dismissed.
When we were first contacted by members who received the mailer, we called Ms. Estes-Hightower to find out more about the case. We quickly realized she was not equipped to take on a case of this magnitude, had no clue which claims she was going to bring and was completely unfamiliar with the Florida registration statutes. Unfortunately, many people bought into the hopes she was selling and signed on to her case.
Over a year ago, we wrote, “While the firm did file lawsuits, in the opinion of attorneys familiar with the issues and the pleadings, the cases were very rough from the get go. With respect to the TX case we were told, “existing precedent in the Fifth Circuit was already in place that rendered each and every one of Estes-Hightower’s claims frivolous.”
So what did she do after her Texas case was dismissed??? She appealed that loss to the 5th Circuit, which yesterday affirmed that dismissal, making for very bad precedent.
We can’t say whether Estes-Hightower is an opportunist who needed to file “something” after collecting retainers from dozens of people or whether she had good intentions and is just WAY over her head. What we do know is that unless she reaches out for help IMMEDIATELY in her Florida case, she stands to screw people required to register in Florida royally!