Author Topic: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses  (Read 16376 times)

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Offline MJW

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #30 on: February 23, 2013, 11:42:01 AM »
West argued the motion, citing Rule 3.220 and Holmes v. State, which he said is 5th DCA. So far I haven't found any information about it.

Holmes v. State, 557 So. 2d 933 (Fla. 5th DCA 1990)

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Offline RickyJim

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #31 on: February 23, 2013, 11:51:37 AM »
Video of 10/19/12 hearing.

Witness addresses, 0:53:26-1:02:33.

Mortimer has added more commentary since the last time I looked at this. (They can be turned off with the leftmost icon in the row at the bottom right of the video, a rectangular talk balloon with the pop-up legend 'hide annotations'.)
Here is what Mortimer said about the judge's comment that if the defense needs a second deposition, they should make a motion why and she will rule on it (approx. 1:02:30)
Quote
Both are correct here.

West outlined the procedure if he wants to get a second shot at deposing a witness, (aka "continue" the depo he is taking).

Judge Nelson is correct in saying that she was not going to rule in advance that a second or continued depo is ORDERED when she does not know if that situation will arise, such "blanket" orders are frowned upon, and her order would be speculative.

So West should now just drop it, which he does.  He will be able to move the Court to order a a second depo of the same witness.  And the judge will sign that order.

Note that SIGNIFICANTLY the Judge ordered twice now that the State will NOT instruct the witness at deposition to NOT answer the question when MOM West asks the witness for their address (or other personal info about themselves such as employer, etc.)

I wonder what Mortimer thinks of West bringing the address business up again in February without conducting any depositions in the interim. 

Offline MJW

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #32 on: February 23, 2013, 12:44:36 PM »
She did?  Please give reference.  We just learned that there was a mini (pre)deposition of W#8 to get her social media handles so what you are saying seems incorrect.  Since they never had the money to hire PIs to investigate the witnesses, just what could they have done with the addresses?

As far as I remember, Judge Nelson didn't say she wouldn't allow two depositions, but she wouldn't decide in advance that she would. She refused to allow a first mini-deposition to get W8's address. The defense shouldn't have go into the first deposition unprepared, gambling that the judge will grant a second deposition (which, if I were a gambling man, I'd wager she wouldn't.

You have no idea what information the defense could or couldn't obtain if they had the address.

Quoting Mortimer:
Quote
So West should now just drop it, which he does.  He will be able to move the Court to order a a second depo of the same witness.  And the judge will sign that order.

Mortimer has (or had) more faith in Nelson then I do. I wonder if he fees the same now. I think Nelson would deny a second deposition without a specific, significant development based on the address. But that would be an unreasonable requirement, since the purpose of obtaining the address is for background, to guide the questioning.

Offline nomatter_nevermind

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #33 on: February 23, 2013, 01:21:49 PM »
Mortimer has (or had) more faith in Nelson then I do.

Mortimer thought she would order Crump deposed. His comments on the questioning of Crump on 10/19/12 are funny/sad in hindsight.

Offline MJW

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #34 on: February 23, 2013, 01:36:28 PM »
Mortimer thought she would order Crump deposed. His comments on the questioning of Crump on 10/19/12 are funny/sad in hindsight.

The last two hearings have really lowered my opinion of Judge Nelson. She seemed so obstinate and obtuse. She still didn't seem to grasp that Judge Lester's order only applied to public release of the information, even though she had plenty of time to prepare. She completely ignored everything West said about the Crump deposition. Nothing in her response addressed the points he made.

Offline RickyJim

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #35 on: February 23, 2013, 01:57:27 PM »
Depositions and affidavits are apparently both acceptable methods of getting evidence booked in Florida.  Crump, before he was going to be deposed, offered an affidavit instead.  The judge asked West what more did he want to know from Crump for the Zimmerman criminal case.  West, appearing surprised by such an obvious question, was only able to come up with stuff that wouldn't even be admissible for that case but certainly could play a part in future criminal and civil actions against Crump.  So she decided to turn down West's request.

It certainly is conceivable that the defense knows that some big news is about to explode the case wide open and they are just marking time.  I can't explain their ineptitude in any other way.

Offline MJW

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #36 on: February 23, 2013, 02:30:48 PM »
Depositions and affidavits are apparently both acceptable methods of getting evidence booked in Florida.  Crump, before he was going to be deposed, offered an affidavit instead.  The judge asked West what more did he want to know from Crump for the Zimmerman criminal case.  West, appearing surprised by such an obvious question, was only able to come up with stuff that wouldn't even be admissible for that case but certainly could play a part in future criminal and civil actions against Crump.  So she decided to turn down West's request.

It certainly is conceivable that the defense knows that some big news is about to explode the case wide open and they are just marking time.  I can't explain their ineptitude in any other way.

1) Nothing the defense has done recently has been inept. They can't force the judge to follow the law.

2) A discovery deposition can be conducted to gather information that's reasonably calculated to lead to admissible evidence; the information, itself, does not need to be admissible.

3) The Florida discovery rules don't give a witness the option of submitting an affidavit in lieu of being deposed. Beekie v. Morgan, 751 So. 2d 694 (5th DCA 2000):

Quote
Beekie has other methods of discovery available to him and, it has been suggested, that the loss of his right to orally depose Morgan can be remedied sufficiently so as not to fundamentally affect his ability to try the case. However, oral depositions are considered essential by most trial attorneys. One proceeds to cross-examine a party at trial at one's own peril, without a prior oral deposition.

Oral depositions are live—questioning and receiving responses from a witness. They permit a wider expanse of questions and cross-examination on a broad range of issues, and provide a good test for witnesses and potential theories that might be used at trial. They are used by attorneys to assess the character and personality of a witness, to learn what his or her answers will be at trial, and to explore areas of previously unknown relevant inquiry which are follow-ups from the witness' answers. They also enable an attorney to estimate how the jury will perceive the witness, how prepared a witness is to explain matters, and the extent of his knowledge.

None of the above is available with other discovery methods, which are limited. Answers to written interrogatories generally are written by the other party's attorney and may be so artfully framed as to avoid or evade the issue. Trawick, Florida Practice and Procedure §§ 16-9. They are effective for objective, but not subjective facts. Trawick, Florida Practice and Procedure §§ 16-9. In Florida, the number of permitted questions are limited to thirty. See Trawick, Florida Practice and Procedure § 16-9; Fla. R. Civ. P. 1.340; Gladman v. Hallam, 104 So.2d 46 (Fla. 2d DCA 1958). A party seeking more than this must show good cause and seek an order. Fla. R. Civ. P. 1.340.


Offline nomatter_nevermind

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #37 on: February 23, 2013, 02:33:04 PM »
Holmes v. State, 557 So. 2d 933 (Fla. 5th DCA 1990)

Google Scholar set to search Florida cases. (Replace "Court" with the information you want to search for.)

Many thanks. That will be very useful.

If this is the right Holmes v. State, the defense must be hard up for case law on the issue. The case isn't about pre-trial discovery or the Florida rules. Defense counsel complained they weren't allowed to ask the witness (and alleged victim) her current address at trial, citing the 6th and 14th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.

Offline nomatter_nevermind

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #38 on: February 23, 2013, 02:59:59 PM »
The case isn't about pre-trial discovery or the Florida rules. Defense counsel complained they weren't allowed to ask the witness (and alleged victim) her current address at trial, citing the 6th and 14th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.

Sorry, this is wrong. The witness declined to answer in a pre-trial deposition. Defense didn't raise the issue when crossing the witness at trial.

The 15-day rule wasn't at issue. The only mention of 3.220 is of 3.220(h), and it supports the prosecution. (3.220(h) is on p. 122 of the Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure.)

ETA: I think the Florida rules have been modified since that citation. The rule referred to is now 3.220 (l)(1), worded a bit differently, on p. 125.

« Last Edit: February 23, 2013, 03:05:41 PM by nomatter_nevermind »

Offline MJW

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #39 on: February 23, 2013, 03:03:15 PM »
If this is the right Holmes v. State, the defense must be hard up for case law on the issue. The case isn't about pre-trial discovery or the Florida rules.

There are two questions: When can the address be withheld from the defense? -- which is answered by Holmes; and, At what point must the address be disclosed? -- which is answered by the Rules of Criminal Procedure.

As you and I have both pointed out, Judge Nelson issued an intermediate decision that makes no logical sense: The address must be disclosed, but not within 15 days as required by the Rules of Criminal Procedure.

(I realize you somewhat modified your original comment in a subsequent comment you wrote while I was writing this.)

Offline RickyJim

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #40 on: February 23, 2013, 03:47:20 PM »
1) Nothing the defense has done recently has been inept. They can't force the judge to follow the law.

2) A discovery deposition can be conducted to gather information that's reasonably calculated to lead to admissible evidence; the information, itself, does not need to be admissible.

3) The Florida discovery rules don't give a witness the option of submitting an affidavit in lieu of being deposed. Beekie v. Morgan, 751 So. 2d 694 (5th DCA 2000):
Crump is not a listed witness at the Zimmerman trial yet so your reference does not make it clear he can't submit an affidavit instead of being deposed.   The problem in assessing the defense's competence is that their activities may be like an iceberg with 9/10th out of public view.  I just hear about their pursuit of drivel (wrt the question of Zimmerman's guilt) like Tracy Martin's comments on the 911 screams, Crump's lies, DeeDee's address.  Here is what I would like to know they are after in order to get confidence they are getting their case ready:
  • Thorough interview of Witness#8.  Why she didn't contact police right away?  What did she talk about with Martin all day?  Who did she talk to about her phone calls on 2/26/12 before the interview with Crump? etc.  There are enough questions for her to last at least 400 minutes, besides asking for her address.  ;D
  • Just what was in the internal memory of Martin's phone?  What GPS data is there on both Zimmerman's and Martin's phones or with their phone companies to track their movements at the time of the incident?  If material that should have been there is missing, why?
  • Police information about exactly where Zimmerman's car was parked wrt the cut through between TTL and RVC
  • Is there a definite echo effect on W#6's lawn that would enable him to distinguish between somebody screaming while facing him versus screaming while facing the row of houses on the other side of the dog walk?
  • Where were Martin's earbuds at the time of his death?  In his pocket?  Still in his ears?  On the ground?

Offline FromBelow

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #41 on: February 23, 2013, 03:55:34 PM »
I think the defense is, essentially, wanting to depose Crump so that they have some sworn testimony, or gain more information, that can be used in a future civil suit against Crump. Maybe Nelson realizes that, wants to stay focused on the murder trial, so denied the deposition.

IMO George will never be convicted. State knows it. Defense knows it. Team Crump knows it. And I think Nelson knows it.

It's not about justice. It's about the money. It's about denying immunity.

Offline RickyJim

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #42 on: February 23, 2013, 04:12:36 PM »
I think the defense is, essentially, wanting to depose Crump so that they have some sworn testimony, or gain more information, that can be used in a future civil suit against Crump. Maybe Nelson realizes that, wants to stay focused on the murder trial, so denied the deposition.

IMO George will never be convicted. State knows it. Defense knows it. Team Crump knows it. And I think Nelson knows it.

It's not about justice. It's about the money. It's about denying immunity.
I agree with everything you said except perhaps the last sentence.  If he is not going to be convicted, exactly who benefits from denying immunity to Zimmerman, and why?

Offline FromBelow

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #43 on: February 23, 2013, 04:21:14 PM »
I agree with everything you said except perhaps the last sentence.  If he is not going to be convicted, exactly who benefits from denying immunity to Zimmerman, and why?

Obviously Crump does. If George isn't given immunity he can sue George for everything he might get from suing NBC and all the other media outlets.

Offline nomatter_nevermind

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Re: Feb. 22 Hearing on Subpoenas, Crump Deposition and Production of Addresses
« Reply #44 on: February 23, 2013, 04:25:18 PM »
There are two questions: When can the address be withheld from the defense? -- which is answered by Holmes; and, At what point must the address be disclosed? -- which is answered by the Rules of Criminal Procedure.

Good point. When West came into court on 10/19/12, he may not have known that de la Rionda was going to concede that the question could be asked in the depositions. But that concession made Holmes irrelevant.

Judge Nelson didn't say she would order the witnesses to answer if they declined. She deferred that until the event. If one of the witnesses won't give their address at the deposition, Holmes may be relevant then.

Holmes sets a high bar for when an address may be withheld on grounds of witness safety. There must be an 'actual' threat. An 'implied' threat isn't sufficient.

West implied the threat has to come from the defendant, not from an independent third party. I didn't see that on a first reading, but I could have missed it.

AFAIK, no one has alleged even an 'implied' threat from Zimmerman himself.

 

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