Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Strange Tale of the Missing Deadlines


Last month, Jose Baez was sanctioned and fined $583.73 for not complying with a court order. The Court had granted the State's request for additional defense discovery on December 3, 2010 nunc pro tunc (retroactive to) November 29, 2010. The order specified what information the defense was to provide regarding expert witnesses they planned to have testify during the trial. What the defense gave the State fell far short of the order and the prosecution filed the motion for sanctions. Ultimately, Judge Perry wrote that, "The Court finds that defense counsel Jose Baez has committed a willful violation of the Order to provide additional discovery...¹"
COMES NOW, a new motion was filed by the State requesting the judge to hold Jose in contempt of court for missing yet another deadline. Titled the MOTION FOR RULE TO SHOW CAUSE, it accuses him of failing to comply with paragraph five of the Court's February 7 order:
Frye Hearings: The motions addressing Frye issues pertaining to scientific evidence shall be held on March 23, 24, and 25, 2011. The court will provide a schedule to counsel as to the order in which each motion will be heard. ByFebruary 17, 2011 at 4:00 p.m., defense counsel shall submit to the Court and State in writing, the specific issues that will be objected to in accordance with Frye, including, but not limited to, those objections previously addressed in the motions.
What happened? While there's no doubt in my mind the defense has been rather flippant about orders and deadlines, why would Jose & Co. ignore this one and plead bewilderment as he did in his e-mail to the judge's judicial assistant? After all, the order is very clear, isn't it?