Monday, April 5, 2010
This has been quite a day in court. Tempers flared, complaints were made. It was a showdown. Blogger ate my article!
Towards the end of the hearing, in his rebuttal to Mark NeJames, Baez placed all blame of defending the case on the documents. He wants them, and he wants them all. They are critical to the case. "They" are trying to kill Casey Anthony and "we" are trying to save her life! Judge Strickland pointed out that this hearing is not before a jury, but there are a lot of people on TV watching!
And so we were.
This was a very long hearing and, according to Mark Eiglarsh on InSession, it could have been wrapped up in five minutes.
Apparently, Baez had contacted Joseph Jordan's attorney who said he would bring in his client as a witness. Jordan never appeared.
Jose Baez opened the hearing by stating that he had two arguments for the Subpoena Duces Tecum he had filed. First, the documents in question were subject to duces tecum.
He then asserted that Texas Equusearch was conducting business in Florida and even opened an Orlando chapter, and was clearly an agent of the state. Finally, the documents are in Florida.The defense had discovered 4 additional searchers that had not been provided by TES. They were Laura Buchanan, Joseph Jordan, Danny Iberson, and an unknown K-9 officer from Panama City (referring to Cpl. Edwards interview with Jordan).
Baez went on to say that there were many photographs and videos taken at that site and others which showed searchers. After a very long pause so that everybody could view the pictures, Baez said that there was a great deal of materiality in the pictures and finding the names of the people in them. As an example, he showed Judge Strickland one with Danny Ibison with his dog taken with Detectives Melich and Allen. When asked by the judge how he knew they were all TES people, Baez pointed to the caption in the picture that said so.
For me, the most astounding thing Baez said in the hearing was:
It just takes one person to believe that those, that the remains of Caylee Marie Anthony, were placed there after Casey Anthony was locked up in jail, to reach a reasonable doubt, which of course would, require Ms. Anthony's acquittal.
Alas, if there were true, the defense would have a slam-dunk case!
Baez then got into the meat of his argument.
He brought out TES form #08895 and pointed out that the signature at the bottom was illegible and that the name of the team leader was cut off of the top left-hand side.
There was a cure for that problem, just shoot an e-mail over to NeJame's office and ask for the name!
He also said that he learned Joseph Jordan's name through Laura Buchanan who possessed forms that weren't in the package.
It would seem that Ms. Buchannan must have contacted the defense since they didn't have her name.
Jordan had searched the area along the stockade fence and found a baby blanket and cooler that Ibison was sent to check out. Baez pointed out those items were found in the area near where the remains were found. Unfortunately, the two didn't go into the woods due to water.
Hello! If they didn't go into the wood where Caylee's remains were found due to water, why are we here today?
Baez then dropped his personal "BOMBSHELL". Jordan had sent an e-mail to Allen and Melich just after the remains were found. It said he thought the body could have been placed there after they searched. The State didn't include it in disclosure! They didn't call Jordan in and interview him at the time. Baez started talking Brady (disclosure) violation and Linda Drane Burdick got up to object, since Brady violations are not part of the motion.
Baez then moved on to complain that Tim Miller wasn't on the witness list. Mark NeJames objected that this issue isn't relevant to the motion.
Judge Strickland reminded Baez that they were discussing the motion to modify the TES order.
Jose Baez then offered "several" actions:
1. Compel the State to subpoena the documents
2. Grant his motion
After a bit more irrelevancy concerning Tim Miller being on the witness list, Baez then stated that the court is allowing Mr. NeJames to say what is relevant to the defense. He allowed Brad Conway to view the documents! He allowed the media to view the documents!
Baez then argued that when the original order was made, he NEVER thought he'd find other names. These documents are CRITICAL to the defense. Somehow, this ended up being an issue that Ms. Anthony was unable to face her accusers.
Let me think, not having all 4000 names means they can't call them all and ask if they were at the site, and if they were, to be confronted in a court of law if they didn't find the remains?
Baez then explained that it's possible that people who searched elsewhere may have talked to others who were there at TES meetings, or wherever.
Isn't that heresay?
Again, Why isn't Miller on the witness list? Why are THEY going to Texas to meet with him? Why is he traveling back here to meet with detectives?
I can answer that! You haven't done his deposition yet!
Strickland interjected that the State doesn't ask him who to put on their witness list, that it's who they intend to call.
Baez argued this yet again. I was waiting for him to get back to his own motion!
Strickland reminded Baez that witness lists and discover aren't the same thing. He told Baez to continue.
Baez went back over details, the map with the blanket and cooler. They were in the area, you know. Baez indicated there just may be other "bombshells" out there.
Finally, it was Mark NeJames' turn to speak. He stuck to the topic, thankfully. He pointed out that he had agreed to present Tim Miller for deposition. The defense never bothered to schedule him for a deposition since August 27, 2009. He said he didn't understand how the defense could say he was unavailable.
NeJame then went through the information he listed in his motion. He went through how he allowed Conway to review the information first out of respect for the Anthony family. He wasn't allowed to take pictures or write anything down. He tabbed the items to be released. He offered the same opportunity to Baez, who didn't show up, just sent a copying company to do the job for him against the court ruling. NeJames spoke up for the volunteers who did now want their information made available to subject them to threats, lawyers, bloggers, etc.
NeJame first raised his voice as he said:
And how they can jump to this ridiculous conclusion of these "bombshells" when they haven't even taken a moment, I mean, not even a 5 minute inquiry, to inspect the 4000 documents, if they're all that important, is beyond me.
He also read from the defense motion that the defense had said that the court had placed a "burden" on them to go to NeJames' office to inspect the documents. He ranted on a bit more about this and the "burden" it was for the defense. He compared the 10 minute walk to his office to the time the defense had spent on TV interviews and drives to the TV stations.
Suffice it to say that I have never seen Mr. NeJames so exercised! His voice kept getting louder and louder as he voiced his opinion of the defense team's efforts to identify important, crucial even, material for their cause.
Finally, he shouted: COME BY TO MY OFFICE! AFTER COURT! as he looked towards the defense table.
At that point, the judge commented and Mr. NeJames apologized to the court. Baez just smirked.
Nejames then went back to the TES form signed by Joseph Jordan. NeJames pointed out that it was unclear if the copy provided to the court was one copied by his office or by Baez' office. He also pointed out that they could have seen the original at his office if there were a problem. He also noted that the form also included people who searched with Jordan and some had phone numbers. The defense could have contacted them. In essence, there were more than 32 names released to the defense.
He also addressed the issue of Laura Buchanan. She searched Blanchard Park and her document wasn't part of the 32. TES could not know that she was at the other site. Nejames also pointed out that hers was an unsworn statement which he read for the record.
NeJames cleaned up a few details we've already heard in his motion (including the details of Longo's notice to Baez that he hadn't seen the documents) and sat down after saying that this motion was in very, very bad faith and that the defense's problems with the documents were due to laziness or sloppiness by the defense team.
In his rebuttal to NeJames, Jose Baez stated that the reason that they hadn't done the deposition with Tim Miller was that they didn't have all the information they needed until they had the proper documents on which to base a proper inquiry of him. He went on to complain that finding Mr. Jordan, finding Ms. Buchanan, finding the others, is very important information that is critical to their case. He repeated that the map he showed the judge of the blanket and cooler was taken very near the place where Caylee's body was found. He complained that the documents are in no particular order, one page doesn't relate to another. (Funny how Conway and Drane Burdick could do it.) He was outraged when he insisted that he and his people could not do a proper job if they went in with no pen (holds up a pen), no pad (holds up a pad of paper), and flag them for NeJames.
NeJames objected to this since it was a re-argument of what was heard the first time.
Baez stated that the 32 people whose documents were released were being called and warned that the defense would be calling them.
NeJames objected that this was information not in evidence. Baez countered with... like Mr. Longo's statement?
Baez then went on to claim that NeJames was injecting himself voluntarily into the case and holding news conferences.! Nejames objected that there was no relevancy. Baez sites a press release inviting reporters to his office where he stated there was standing water where the remains were found.
Strickland pointed out that he was commenting on the evidence and NeJames spoke next. He explained his role as attorney to TES and was obviously not pleased with Baez's terms that he "injected" himself into the case. He said Baez' statements were "dismissive" and "incorrect".
Strickland then pointed out that this was not in front of a jury and that he wasn't concerned although there were millions of people watching! Judge Strickland sure knows how to get to the heart of the matter.
Baez got up and started pacing and talking again. Smack down from the judge was that he (and NeJames, probably) were just griping.
As the judge calmed the tension level in the courtroom, Baez stated that the facts were clear. He believed that they are entitled to the information and that there was no privacy issue since Conway had inspected all the documents as well as the State. He pointed to information he was getting a year late (Joe Jordan's e-mail). He asked why anyone would have a problem with his uncovering "the truth"! Add on lack of cooperation! Everyone is out to get the defense (in my own words).
I must say, this is good defense attorney rhetoric here...
Here is my favorite line from Mr. Baez He states that...
...they're trying to kill Ms. Anthony, and we're trying to save her life here, and we can't do it if, if we're handcuffed at every twist and turn we take!
Baez suggested that the defense get all the documents UNDER SEAL. He could copy all the documents and get any clarification of documents by going to NeJames' office. Baez stated that the defense hadn't leaked any sensitive information in the case. (As in the photos of the remains). The defense has a good track record on this.
NeJames quickly replied that the judge had already done the balancing act on the issue and that they had not seen any new case law cited in the motion. He indicated that the release of information does and could cause harassment of people who were nowhere near where Caylee was. He essentially said the judge had already ruled on the system that would work the best. The door had been open for many months and was still open. He also added that he wouldn't want the state to pay the financial portion of his motion.
With this information, the discussion of the motion ended.
There was other discussion involving a motion Jose Baez had filed to unseal the Joseph Jordan audio tape which was acquired illegally. The judge had not read it yet, although there was some discussion about it.
Linda Drane Burdick indicated that if the judge ordered it unsealed, it would force the States' Attorneys to commit a 3rd degree felony.
Cheney Mason mentioned something about a decision that it would not be so. Drane Burdick responded that if there was such a ruling, she would like to see it. Nothing was decided about the issue in court today, I'll spare you the details until we see the motion and hear the arguments.
JUDGE RULES ON MOTION
Late this afternoon, Judge Stan Strickland denied the defense motion. In his decision, he stated that:
Having now reviewed all of the exhibits submitted, this Court sees no reason to modify its original Order of August 27th, 2009. the files are still available for review at the office of Mr. NeJames, and, if flagged for review and no agreement can be reached, this Court remains able to schedule an in camera review followed by a ruling.
Raw Video Part 1
Raw Video Part 2