I made a promise to do my homework and post information about the motions to be heard at the hearing Friday, August 21, 2009 in Judge Stan Strickland's courtroom at 9:30 AM. It's so much more interesting to know what will be discussed in the courtroom and makes it easier to follow the arguments.
I started with Tim Miller and the motions for Texas Equusearch and was taken all the way back to January and the original Subpoena Duces Tecum which was filed January 7, 2009. The one-page motion asked for:
a. Any and all records relating to searches for Caylee Marie Anthony in Central Florida.
b. Any and all records of volunteers who assisted Texas Equusearch during their search for Caylee Marie Anthony.
c. Any and all photographs and video recordings of said searches.
d. Any and all communications between Texas Equusearch and the various law enforcement agencies involved in the search for Caylee Marie Anthony.
e. Any and all maps denoting the specific areas that were searched by Texas Equusearch.
At the hearing on January 8, Judge Stan Strickland noted that there was nobody from EquiSearch in attendance at the hearing. State's Attorney Linda Drane-Burdick pointed out that the court had no jurisdiction in Texas. She didn't know if EquuSearch would be willing to turn those records over to Baez.
Jose Baez explained that TES worked with the Sheriff's Office in the searches. The judge stated that TES might just give the information to them if they requested it. He told Baez he was free to subpoena them, but that they are located in Texas. The judge no ruling on the motion and would take it up again at the January 30 hearing.
T&T link to this hearing.
On January 21, Jose Baez submitted an Amended Application For Subpoena Duces Tecum. This motion was identical to the original with the exception of the last item. It stated:
6. The Defense has made attempts to obtain the aforementioned items directly from the source, but it was not provided pursuant to said request.
This time around, Tim Miller's attorney Mark NeJame filed a Request To Strike And Response.
The NeJame argued in the motion that:
...The Amended Application for Subpoena Duces Tecum is critically flawed in that it has failed to state or make a requisite showing that TES is a material witness in the case... (3)
A Subpoena Duces Tecum of the items requested by the Defendant, through her counsel, would be immaterial and irrelevant. None of thousands of searchers, who volunteered with TES, were ever at the exact spot where Caylee Anthony's remains were found. (5)
"... All that is required is that the subpoenaed materials be relevant to the investigation being conducted and that the subpoena not be overly broad or burdensome. A proper subpoena is one that is properly limited in scope, relevant in purpose, and specific in directive so that compliance will not be unduly burdensome. (6)
TES is a non-profit organization... It does not have the time, money or resources to pay for and provide the Defendant with all of the items requested. (8)
If this Honorable Court is inclined to grant this deficient application, TES respectfully requests that Defendant provide TES with adequate and sufficient advanced funds... and that the funds have come from a permissable source. (9)
The following day, Judge Strickland ordered the following ruling:
The Court does not have jurisdiction to order a subpoena duces tecum as requested. The defense must avail itself of the Uniform Law to Secure the Attendance of Witnesses from Within or Without a State in Criminal Proceedings to accomplish this task. This would require the defense to show that the witness is material, and that has not been done in the instant pleading...
Strickland also declared that the defense had shown insufficient evidence that TES was an agent of the State.
T&T link for this hearing
Nearly seven months later, we are preparing for yet another discussion of TES and the information they may possess in regards to the search for Caylee Anthony. Casey has obtained a top-notch death penalty lawyer, Andrea Lyon and the motions filed for this hearing are replete with citations of applicable law and all the "bells and whistles" that were sadly lacking from Jose Baez's motions.
The new motion for a Subpoena Duces Tecum has an impossibly long name and is four pages long. It is accompanied by a Memorandum of Law to back up the assertion that Tim Miller is indeed a material witness in the case. There are twelve appendices which provide additional information. It varies from excerpts of Joy Wray's interview with the police to duty rosters of the officers who assisted in the search. This is the way the motion should have been presented in January!
Instead of being the fishing expedition, the defense has limited the information requested to the area around Suburban Drive and Hidden Oaks Elementary School.
What strikes me most of all is that the defense has finally put out exactly why this information is so important.
9. The above-mentioned documents and information are material to Ms. Casey's (sic) capital murder charge because they directly pertain to the timing and manner of the arrival of the remains of Caylee Marie Anthony at the site where they were discovered.
What remains to be seen in Friday's hearing is whether or not Tim Miller will be certified as a material witness in the case, whether he was acting as an agent of the State, and whether he will have to provide all the information the defense wants. I look forward to seeing Mr. NeJame go to battle with Baez and Lyon.
I'm working on part 2: Leonard Padilla and his crew...