A three-judge panel on Wednesday denied ousted Miami Police Chief Miguel Expositos bid to get his job back.
Exposito appealed his 2011 firing on a technicality, saying he had not disobeyed orders from City Manager Johnny Martinez to hold off on three employee demotions. Attorneys for the former police chief argued that Exposito had reassigned the staffers, not demoted them.
His attorneys also made the case that the city commission had violated its so-called five-day rule in firing Exposito six days after he was suspended.
Circuit Court Judge Valerie Manno Schurr opined that the commissions decision to remove Exposito was supported by competent substantial evidence. She also found the six-day time frame for Expositos firing reasonable, in part because the deliberations had lasted late into the night Friday and needed to be continued the following Monday.
Judges Norma Lindsey and Milton Hirsch concurred in the opinion.
Martinez, the city manager, said he was pleased with the ruling.
We were confident that we followed all the legal procedures, Martinez wrote in a statement.
Exposito said he was considering his options moving forward.
We believe that the lower court erred in its opinion, and as is our right, we have the option to request a re-hearing or take an appeal to the Third District Court of Appeal, he wrote in a statement.
The former chief has said he believes his firing was politically motivated.
During his time as chief, Exposito had several public spats with Miami Mayor Tomás Regalado and Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernández Rundle. He was also the subject of criticism in 2010 and 2011 after Miami officers shot and killed several black men in the inner city.