Restrictions placed by a federal judge on what defendants can say about being at Cliven Bundy’s ranch in April 2014 are leading to tense moments in the Las Vegas retrial of four men accused of wielding assault-style weapons to stop federal agents from rounding up cattle belonging to the anti-government figure.
Chief U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro refused Monday to order a mistrial sought by the defense attorney for Eric Parker, a defendant who Navarro ordered off the witness stand last week before telling the jury to disregard his testimony.
Such a dramatic step involving a defendant in the presence of a jury is unusual and might draw scrutiny from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, said Robert Draskovich, a Las Vegas lawyer who said he had never heard of such a move in more than two decades practicing in federal courts. Draskovich is not involved in the Bundy case.
The bedrock of our judicial system is under attack in this Las Vegas Federal Courtroom.
During the first trial of the Bunkerville defendants, this past March, Judge Gloria Navarro made the specific point to Todd Engel that, in her courtroom, defendants have only three rights.
In happened after Engel, who was representing himself as was his right to do, asked the unforgivable question, “Is it true that [Special Agent In Charge] Dan Love is under criminal investigation?”
The prosecution threw fits, yelling objections. Navarro not only sustained their objections but stripped Engel of his right to self-representation. Navarro told Engel that he had lost his privilege to self-representation and was no longer allowed to talk in her courtroom.
Three years ago several counties and groups filed lawsuits in federal court seeking to block the water grab, claiming the federal land agencies had failed to properly evaluate the environmental damage and follow the law. The lawsuits claimed the Interior Department and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) violated the National Environmental Policy Act and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act in approving the groundwater project.
This past week in a Las Vegas courtroom federal Judge Andrew Gordon heard nearly two hours of oral arguments from both sides seeking summary judgment.
The judge in the trial of four defendants in the 2014 Bunkerville standoff with BLM agents attempting to confiscate rancher Cliven Bundy’s cattle has made it clear she will not allow a defense based on First or Second Amendment rights or claims that BLM misbehavior provoked the protest.
On Thursday she cut short the testimony of defendant Eric Parker after he tried to mention in his defense testimony a “First Amendment area” the BLM had set up to isolate protesters — an area that Gov. Brian Sandoval said “tramples upon Nevadans’ fundamental rights under the U.S. Constitution” — and attempted to mention where a BLM sniper was positioned.
Prisoners in Pahrump, Nevada’s CoreCivic operated Federal Detention Center, who have been in other facilities previously with remote Video Chat ability, may feel differently in spite of the cost. Not having it, except for locally at the facility, means families must travel to the southern Nevada desert just to see them on Video.
Jerry DeLemus, the 62-year-old Rochester man serving a six-year prison term for his role in Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy’s armed standoff in 2014 has been permanently moved to the federal prison at Fort Devens in Ayer, Mass., his wife said.
Former state Rep. Susan DeLemus said she hasn’t spoken to her husband for nine days while he’s been “quarantined” and processed since his move from a Nevada prison to Devens, 90 minutes from their home.
“Never in my life would I ever think I would be happy my husband was in a prison of any kind, but I am happy he will be in Devens permanently now so I can see him,” Mrs. DeLemus said during a telephone interview.
August 8, 2017, was the date set for the government to file their response. They did so in the Government’s Reply to Respondent’s Opposition to Government’s Memorandum in Support of Civil Contempt. That will be the subject of this article, however the recent background, since the May 9, 2017, Jurisdiction Hearing.
As a result of that Hearing, the government first filed the Government’s Memorandum in Support of Civil Contempt (June 12, 2017). That was the subject “Freedom of the Press #16 – Jurisdiction Hearing“. It appears that since January, when the government sought to have me held in Contempt of Court, they have yet to come up with a case citation that supports their position.
My response was filed as Memorandum of Law in Opposition to the Government’s Memorandum in Support of Civil Contempt (July 21, 2017). This Memorandum increases the burden on the government, separating articles published before the “Supplemental Protective Order” and the one article published after that Order. The government has yet to meet any standard of proof with regard to their legal responsibility to do so.
PROVOCATION BY THE GOVERNMENT IS NOT A DEFENSE. IT IS IRRELEVANT AND ONLY GOES TO JURY NULLIFICATION. ~JUDGE NAVARRO
The Retrial of Defendants Eric Parker, Steven Stewart, Scott Drexler, and Ricky Lovelein took a decided twist today in a Las Vegas Federal courtroom.
The defense had already been shot down by Judge Gloria Navarro. Yesterday, the day was spent previewing the defense witness testimony and Navarro refused to allow their witnesses to take the stand. She called the testimony “Not Relevant”. She has made it clear that there is no such thing as self defense against the government, or that of defending anyone else against the government. Law enforcement cannot be considered to use “excessive” force in this case. She believes that if any of this is brought to the jury, they may acquit for “jury nullification”. Navarro seems to have a pathological fear of jury nullification. It was left to Parker to take the stand in his own defense.
“Discovery” in a court case refers to the evidence, exhibits and reports that one party intends to use to prove its case. In a typical criminal case, the government’s “discovery” contains the various police reports, photos and other exhibits that form the basis of a prosecution. Court rules generally require prosecutors to reveal their discovery to defendants within prescribed time limits.
But like other aspects of the Bunkerville, Nevada (‘Bundy Ranch’) case, the discovery is unusual in many ways. It is so vast that it cannot be delivered or stored in printed form. Defense attorneys say they are given passwords to government search engines which contain the discovery.
The Bundy case discovery is so massive that a west coast law firm has reportedly contracted to index and categorize the discovery. Although the discovery is reportedly machine-searchable, those who have access to it say it is difficult to navigate through.
The Bunkerville Retrial in Las Vegas has taken yet another turn for the worst. Judge Gloria Navarro allowed the defense to proffer several witnesses via SKYPE today. The testimony was taken out of the hearing of the jury so that she might determine if the testimony is relevant.
Included in this group was former FOX News reporter Dennis Michael Lynch, and a few citizens that were actually in the wash on April 12, 2014.
Each of the witnesses testified to the fear they felt that day watching the multiple law enforcement agencies point guns at them and hearing statements on the loudspeakers that the BLM had been given authority to shoot the protesters.
“If you move forward you can be shot,” Lynch said, reciting the message.
“I thought we might die in the wash that day,” Kenneth Rhoades testified.
The same testimony was repeated throughout the day. However, when it was all said and done, Judge Navarro said that this testimony was not relevant to the case so she will not allow it to be presented to the jury.
With the jury box empty, defense attorneys called four witnesses Wednesday in the retrial of four Bunkerville standoff defendants.
U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro allowed three men and one woman, each of whom attended the April 2014 protest, to give proffer statements or a preview of what they might tell a jury. But the judge ruled that jurors should not hear their testimony because none of them offered evidence of self-defense the men on trial hoped to claim.
All of the witnesses testified via Skype.
No more well-defined example of the injustices wrought by the hands of an out-of-control Federal Government can be found than the case of the Bundy Family from the State of Nevada, whose multiple family members rot in a Federal Prison on this very day.
Our Founding Fathers said that Federal Government was to be limited in power regarding to land use within states, and that states themselves should have the say over how the land was used. This is made crystal clear in the Federalist Papers.
Over time, as if in slow motion, our enumerated Constitutional rights have been eroded, to the point of being unrecognizable today.
Prosecutors questioned their final witness Tuesday in the retrial of four Bunkerville standoff defendants, whose attorneys began preparing to present their case to jurors.
U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro said she would allow one potential defense witness, who was at the 2014 armed standoff but not arrested, to give a proffer statement outside the presence of jurors Wednesday, while a private investigator could testify for the defense the next day.
After spending several hours on the witness stand detailing photographs and videos of the standoff and Bunkerville area, FBI special agent Joel Willis, a key government witness, responded to about 15 juror questions.
Navarro answered one question from the panel, indicating they would be able to review exhibits during deliberations.
The Bunkerville retrial in Las Vegas has several interesting updates today.
The prosecution has stated that they have finished presenting their witnesses, however they will not formally rest their case until the next time they see the jury, which is expected at 9am Thursday morning.
The jury questions for the final witness, Special Agent Willis, were very interesting and seemed to show that the jurors are getting a bit annoyed at the behavior of the judge.
The youngest Oregon refuge occupier to face indictment acknowledged Monday that he was an “arrogant, ignorant young man” who made an impulsive mistake in going to the bird sanctuary last year and doing guard duty during the armed takeover.
“If I could go back, I wouldn’t do it again,” Travis Cox said, standing beside his lawyer during his sentencing hearing.
He was ordered to serve two years of probation, including two months on home detention, for conspiring to impede federal workers through intimidation, threat or force during the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.
AUSA Myhre took him through extremely tedious testimony while the spectators and jury made every attempt to stay focused. Myhre does seem to have perfected the soporific art of direct examination.
Cross examination began late this afternoon with Rich Tanasi, attorney for Steven Stewart, walking the witness through to admission that the only time Stewart was seen holding his firearm above the concrete jersey barrier was after the BLM had left the area.
This has been a very eventful week in the Bunkerville Retrial of four defendants. The prosecution has demonized these good men at every turn. They have portrayed them as lawless militia, anti-government radicals, and immoral propagandists.
“I Guess I Was Wrong”
The week began with more government agents taking the witness stand to tell how afraid they were of these gun-totin’ cowboys. BLM Special Agent Robert Shilaikis took some video of the events on April 12, 2014, because he was expecting a gunfight and wanted documentation. He was afraid that memories would fade over time.
Judge Gloria Navarro is presiding over the Bunkerville retrial in Las Vegas, Nevada. She has continued to show her bias against the defense in her rulings and her reactions in the courtroom.
She has insisted that they not look around, at all, while in the courtroom, even during breaks and sidebars. Navarro was so concerned, one day this week, that she had Eric Parker removed from the courtroom for an entire segment of the trial because he turned to look at the overheard viewscreen.
The case against an FBI agent charged with lying about firing two shots at Oregon standoff spokesman Robert “LaVoy” Finicum most likely will turn on expert testimony about the validity of the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office investigation, a defense lawyer said Thursday.
No one reported that they saw or heard agent W. Joseph Astarita fire and no direct evidence exists linking any bullet or shell casing to Astarita’s rifle, one of his lawyers said.
Prosecutors countered that the investigation continues and revealed for the first time that not only are shell casings from Astarita’s alleged shots missing, but so are shell casings from some of the Oregon State Police shots fired at the Jan. 26, 2016, roadblock.
Though the defendants are actually Eric Parker, Scott Drexlar, Steven Stewart and Ricky Lovelein, the prosecution has made their association the the group “Idaho 3%” a material part of the case against them. It is enough to believe the government is trying to prosecute the group, as well as the individuals.
The Bunkerville Retrial in Las Vegas continued today with Judge Navarro’s bias being highlighted for the world to see.
The day was filled mostly with time outside of the jury presence, going over Facebook posts that were offered for evidence. Both sides had their say on why they did/did not want the evidence admitted.
Facebook evidence is highly controversial. There are too many variables within Facebook to guarantee that a post was made by a particular person. The prosecution wants to show that this attitude of “conspiracy’ continued long after the Standoff was over. They want the jury to believe that the dissidents were recruiting based on their belief that they had won against the government.
It is known that the jury favored acquittal in the previous trial with 2 of the defendants receiving 10-2 votes in their favor.
Additionally, the jury forms showed marks indicating acquittal, which were later scratched out over confusion on legal points.
However, the government has learned a few lessons since then. They have attempted to change their narrative to reconcile with, what they hope will be, a more popular view of their prosecution.
Shari Dovale of Redoubt News Starts giving Nightly Bundy Standoff Trial Updates on INFOWARS.com Nightly News.
In “Liberty or Laws? – Justice or Despotism?“, I discussed how the case law method provides the government, through judicial proceedings, to move, a decision at a time, away from the intent of the Constitution. In recent events in the second Tier 3 trial, only two-thirds of the trial was declared a “mistrial”, while the other third was not declared a mistrial. I say this because the first trial, by the government’s design, included six defendants, all of whom were accused of wielding firearms on April 12, 2014, when the Bureau of Land Management returned the surviving captured cattle to their rightful owner. Two defendants were found guilty of some of the charges. The remaining four were not found guilty of any of the charges, though they were also not found not guilty. So, there was no mistrial on the two, but there was a mistrial in the same singular trial of the other four.