Saturday, April 24, 2010
Chief Judge Belvin Perry, Jr.
photo courtesy of 9thcircuit.org
It's been slightly over a week since the defense filed a motion for the recusal of Judge Stan Strickland. Since then, Strickland recused himself, Judge Belvin Perry Jr. took on the case and issued a sua sponte Order Setting Case Management Hearing for Friday, April 30 at 9:30 AM. The motions which CFNews13 published Monday have yet to be filed with the court in completed condition.
Unlike Casey Anthony, who repeatedly spoke of her "gut feelings" that Caylee Marie Anthony was alive, I seldom tell the world my "gut feelings" because I am likely to be wrong. I simply don't trust myself as I don't know all the facts. It's one thing to read a motion or watch a hearing and write about the facts and toss in a bit of opinion for the sake of argument. It's another thing to opine about things for which I have no direct knowledge.
Aside from a few comments about Judge Perry's order, whatever I write today is just my "gut instinct", right or wrong.
It is obvious from the judge's order, he is planning on getting the case on track and moving ahead.
It is hereby ORDERED AND ADJUDGED:
1. At the Case Management Hearing, counsel for the State and the Defense shall be prepared to discuss the following issues:
-Discovery deadlines, including but not limited to, the scheduling and completion of depositions of all ordinary and expert witnesses.
-future Motion deadlines
-Motions that remain pending and unresolved
-Pre-trial and Trial dates.
2. Counsel shall provide the Court with a list of pending Motions, identifying with specificity those which will require evidentiary hearings and those which may be addressed based on the pleadings.
3. Counsel shall provide courtesy copies of all future Motions to the Court.
It seems there will be no more "motions by ambush" by the defense when they file them at the end of the day on a Friday or just prior to a motions hearing.
4. Counsel shall familiarize themselves with the Ninth Judicial Circuit Courtroom Decorum Policy set forth in Administrative Order Number 2003-07, a cop of which is attached to the Order, and shall, at all times, conduct themselves accordance with that policy.
The Administrative Order is indeed at the end of the order and it will behoove all parties in the case (including those who come to watch the hearing) to tow the line of traditional courtroom behavior. If the hearing is televised, it will be fascinating to watch. I am hoping Judge Perry gives a nod to the cameras in the courtroom for all of us who are watching and waiting for the final justice for Caylee. Many of us have already devoted almost two years to the case and it would be a disappointment to have to rely on second-hand information from reports on InSession and from bloggers. We all want to "be there".
Later during next week, I will go through all the pending motions and compile a list with links. I always print out the motions to read and analyze, and I'm hoping my list is fairly complete. It will be interesting to see if I've missed any!
Now, I'm heading off to "gut instinct" land.
Judge Strickland responded to the defense motion Monday morning. Late that night, CFNews13 posted an article which stated:
On the same day Strickland stepped down, the defense filed more motions, some regarding the death penalty.
Below the article, the motions are listed.
Motion to Declare Florida Statute 921-141 Unconstitutional
Second Motion to Preclude Death Procedures for Impermissible Prosecutorial Motives
Motion to Preclude the State's Impermissible, Gender Biased, Request for Imposition of the Death Penalty
Defendant's Motion for Protective Order with Respect to Penalty Phase Discovery
When they were first posted, they were signed only by Andrea Lyon. There were no dates, certification of service, nor the stamp of the Clerk of the Court. At the time, I assumed there was a glitch in the defense plan to file them. The motions had Judge Strickland's name on them and there were mistakes in the dates of the facts of the case with the year 2009 instead of 2008.
I have to admit that I have barely scanned the motions since they are not yet official, but I can say that they are more of the same motions Lyon has been filing in the case. Some of them are still pending!
When I went back to cite the article today and post the links, I found that they are still in the same condition they were at the beginning of the week! So, they are still not filed!
Mind you, the following is my "gut instinct" and in no way based on fact or personal knowledge!
I believe that, when the defense filed their first motion to recuse Strickland on Friday, April 16, 2008, at 4:48 P.M., they never expected Strickland to recuse himself Monday morning. I also think that the motions were "leaked" to CFNews 13 as a quid pro quo for the ambush interview with Marinade Dave prior to the filing.
The defense planned to file the motions with Strickland on Monday, April 19 and had given CFNews 13 to publish them at the end of the day, and there they remain.
On Monday, when Perry took over the case, the defense could not file them, and they probably read the blogs with pointed out the date errors. I gave the defense till the end of the week to properly file the motions before writing about them.
Since they haven't been filed yet, I am wondering if the defense thought that Judge Strickland would not recuse himself immediately or even recuse himself at all! Why else would they have his name on those motions? Somebody called me "nuts" on the comments on another blog when I put out a possibility that the defense was hoping for Strickland to stay and rule on these motions prior to recusing himself. Then, they would have had more ammunition for appellate claims that the judge was biased.
Please comment on what you think, just be kind!
By the way, I just read that Cheney Mason and Jose finally went to look at the TES documents.
WKMG reported that
On Friday, for the first time in eight months, the attorneys visited Nejame's office and were caught on video inside a conference room looking through boxes of documents.
Although the attorney representing Texas EquuSearch said none of the 4,000 volunteers searched the exact spot where Caylee's remains were found, Anthony's defense team wanted to see for themselves.
Shortly after Local 6 arrived at Nejame's office, Anthony's attorneys stormed off. Baez and Mason would not explain why they were finally viewing the records, and it's not known if the attorneys would be returning to Nejame's office. Nejame refused to comment.
My guess that the next defense motion will be to be able to copy all the documents for any number of reasons. Got a nickle you want to bet?