Skip to comments.Judge says polygamist leader can represent himself (Warren Jeffs trial)
Posted on 07/28/2011 4:07:36 PM PDT by MizSterious
WILL WEISSERT, Associated Press
Updated 04:34 p.m., Thursday, July 28, 2011
SAN ANGELO, Texas (AP) Polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs dismissed his high-powered defense team and began representing himself Thursday in a last-ditch attempt to delay the start of his sexual assault trial.
With opening statements set to begin, the 55-year-old ecclesiastical head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints said he had spent extensive time training his lawyers, but they weren't able to present "a pure defense." He then pleaded for more time to prepare the case by himself.
Jeffs burned through seven attorneys in six months and prosecutors had complained his frequent switching of counsel was a delay tactic. But special prosecutor Eric Nichols, representing the Texas attorney general's office, said he'd be willing to stop the trial until Monday if Jeffs represented himself.
State District Judge Barbara Walther allowed Jeffs to become his own lawyer but refused to delay the case even as Jeffs sat alone at the defense table, rising every few minutes to mumble about how not delaying it would be a grave injustice.
The judge barreled onward, hearing a pretrial motion Jeffs' lawyers had previously filed seeking to suppress evidence from when Jeffs was arrested after a 2006 traffic stop in Nevada. "Is the defense ready to proceed?" she asked.
(Excerpt) Read more at mysanantonio.com ...
He has a fool as a client, but go for it.
Anybody know how many "rapists" were convicted in that Texas FLDS event last year? I missed them all apparently.
Not just a fool, but an arrogant fool, it seems.
SAN ANGELO, Texas An audio tape of Warren Jeffs in the act of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl will be among items of evidence presented to the jury, special prosecutor Eric Nichols said today in his opening statement in Jeffs' trial on sexual assault charges.
Nichols detailed for the 10-woman, 2-man Tom Green County jury Thursday afternoon the case the state will make against the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints prophet and leader, listing descriptions of evidence that will include documents, photographs and other materials seized from the YFZ Ranch, where the state alleges Jeffs sexually assaulted two underage girls in 2005 and 2006. He stands accused of two counts of sexual assault of a child.
The audio tape was cleared for admission as evidence this morning. It was taken during a traffic stop in Nevada in 2006 when Jeffs was arrested after being a fugitive on the FBI 10 Mosted Wanted Fugitive list for months. Also found in the vehicle, a Cadillac Escalade SUV, were disguises and several thousand dollars in cash.
(Excerpt--read the rest here)
Jeffs trial to be eighth prosecution of FLDS member
By Matthew Waller
Saturday, July 23, 2011
SAN ANGELO, Texas Starting Monday, polygamy-sanctioning sect leader Warren Jeffs will join the ranks of fellow members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints who have been prosecuted by the state.
Jeffs will be on trial in two counts of sexual assault of a child.
Seven FLDS members have undergone criminal prosecution, with two having taken plea bargains and five having gone to trial.
There is no here there or there here.
It deals with exhibit 11A.
Nice video summary of the mornings proceedings.
Jeffs was silent in the courtroom today and gave no opening statement. How is he going to represent himself if he doesn’t talk...
The judge won’t put up with that too long.
I believe that is why she compelled him to retain his counsel - even though they are behind the bar.
My guess? He wants to appeal the verdict on the basis of not having adequate representation. I’ve been thinking that he plans to use the trial to preach, but since he’s been so silent, that might not be right. Perhaps he wants to intimidate on cross.
I desire to represent myself, he told the judge in his trademark hypnotic voice. They are not comprehending who they are dealing with. Those who know Jeffs tell The Daily Beast that what he was trying to say is that his attorneys dont recognize he talks to God.
Jeffs followers tell a different story. One of them assured me, Uncle Warren is the purest man on earth. All the world needs to know is that he is one of the cleanest people youll ever meet.
He will get out. And it wont be done by us. Itll be because of God.
The FLDS knows this because their prophet told them so. Every Sunday, Jeffs speaks to them from a pay phone in his jail cell. Last week, he told them hes not going to trial at all, says Brower. And more alarming, hes prophecizing that hell be translated. Translated, according to Brower, means being changed from mortal to immortal. Everybodys wondering if hes going to kill himself.
Subpoenaed by the prosecution? Seventy-eight of Jeffs wives.
The writer also goes on to compare Jeffs to Brian David Mitchell, the perv who kidnapped Elizabeth Smart. Also mentioned is that the fLDS continues to try to have Judge Walther removed from the case. She says that Walther has a target on her back--I'm sure the writer means that in legal terms, but many of us have also read or heard rumblings that the terminology might be valid literally, too. I hope the the good judge has some very good protection for this trial, and perhaps after.
* Posted July 28, 2011 at 9:32 p.m.
The Warren Jeffs trial took an interesting, if not entirely unexpected, turn on Thursday when the 55-year-old leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints fired his seasoned defense team and asked for permission to represent himself.
Before granting the request, 51st District Court Judge Barbara Walther, as she is required to do by law, warned Jeffs of the risks involved and personally discouraged it, saying she had never seen a defendant successfully self-represent in her 30 years of licensed law practice.
Jeffs former attorneys declined to say whether they were privy to his plans, but that they fully support his decision to represent himself because it is his legal right as long as he does so knowingly and intelligently. Law also requires that it be done before the jury is sworn in, which was the case.
Its absolutely his right, its his choice and I support it, said Deric Walpole, Jeffs former lead counsel. Its always preferable to have an experienced counsel at the defense table, but its not necessary and it can be done or the law wouldnt allow for it.
(Excerpted--you can read the rest here.)
I do get the feeling that Walpole was VERY supportive of him being off the case. ;)
Are the parents of the underage girls who were pimped out to this perv going to be charged with anything?
I haven’t heard of it happening, but I’ve long thought that while most of the women are abused into submission, they should still be held accountable for what they force their daughters (some even under 10) to do. The men are just pigs. No redeeming virtues that I know of.
That's what I've been thinking, but somebody on tv said if the judge doesn't go along with this new defense, he could also base an appeal on that.
They should be charged. How brainwashed can parents be to allow this...
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