Skip to comments.Lawyer: Angela Corey missed deadline to release evidence
Posted on 04/28/2012 8:02:15 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
SANFORD, Fla. - As controversy over the $200,000 George Zimmerman raised on PayPal took center stage Friday, Special Prosecutor Angela Corey's decision to ignore legal questions raised over whether she's obeying Florida's public record law went largely unnoticed.
But the issue of whether Corey has the legal right to continue preventing the public from seeing the evidence she says proves Zimmerman committed the second degree murder of Trayvon Martin seems to be coming to a head.
The special prosecutor's office on Friday refused to make that evidence public -- even though an attorney fighting for the public's access insists Friday was when Florida law required Corey to share the evidence with the millions of people following the case.
The reason the deadline for Corey's evidence to become public was Friday, according to Scott Ponce, the attorney representing media organizations seeking access, is because that was 15 days after Zimmerman's attorney served Corey with an April 12 demand for evidence. This process of the state sharing evidence with both the defendant and public at large is known as discovery.
When denying requests from the public for the Zimmerman discovery records Friday, Corey's office told Local 6 Florida law allowed her to keep the records secret using a criminal investigative exemption because "no records have been provided to the defendant."
But Ponce, who specializes in public record law, believes that Corey can no longer use that reason to withhold records from the public, now that the 15 day discovery deadline has passed. That's because Florida law specifically excludes documents "required" to be given to the defendant from the type of records that can be withheld as criminal investigative information.
When Local 6 emailed Corey and her public records attorney, Lisa DiFranza, asking for an explanation as to how they concluded the records were still exempt criminal investigative information, even though Ponce advised the information was required to be given to Zimmerman Friday, the two attorneys did not respond. Neither did Corey's spokesperson, Jackelyn Barnard, even though Florida's public record law requires an agency denying records to give a written response explaining the reasons it concluded records are exempt, when requested.
Zimmerman's attorney, Mark O'Mara, told Local 6 he wants access to the state's information to start preparing his defense, however, he doesn't want the records to become public before he has the chance to file a motion to keep certain information, like witness names and addresses, secret. Corey's office also wants that type of information shielded from public view.
After Friday's hearing, O'Mara told Local 6 he disagrees with what he called Ponce's "more strict interpretation" of the discovery deadline. O'Mara believes the deadline for Corey's office to make the documents public has not yet passed because his interpretation is that the 15 day deadline for Corey's office to make its evidence public doesn't start ticking until after a defendant's arraignment. Zimmerman's is scheduled for May 8.
In response, Ponce provided Local 6 with the exact rule to refute O'Mara's stance that Friday did not mark the deadline for Corey to make her evidence public through discovery.
"The rules of criminal procedure (Rule 3.330(b)) say discovery is required to be given fifteen days after the demand for discovery is served. Nothing in the rule pegs it to arraignment. It is irrelevant that he does not accept it today," Ponce told Local 6 Friday.
When asked if he'd be taking further action so the records would become public, Ponce said, "No word yet on that."
It sure would be convenient for everybody concerned if George Zimmerman mysteriously died.
It looks more and more like the prosecutor filed the charges because of political pressure and the wheels are coming off her case.
Perhaps there is no evidence to release.
They charged him with a crime they can’t prove to make the blacks happy now. When he is acquitted, they will be unhappy again. Do they really think that Jackson, Sharpton, and the New Barack Pampers will forget about this and move on?
I wonder if this could be planned chaos.
Although we’d all love to see what’s in those records, I do believe that O’Mara should be able to see them first for a period of time, so that he can depose any witnesses before they are hunted down by the media.
Angela Corey to judge, “I got nothing”, LOLOL!
I happen to agree with Zimmerman’s lawyer, in that he should have access to the records before the public receives them.
Given the volatile nature of this case and the retaliatory crimes it has generated, I hope O’Mara succeeds in having potential witnesses’ names/addresses or any identifying information redacted before any of the records are made public.
What “retaliatory crimes” are those? I haven’t seen anything about that on MSNBC!
There is no damn evidence. Occam’s razor.
The only evidence probably favors Mr. Zimmerman. Can’t have that, can we?
Well, then! If it’s not on MSNBC it never happened. Mea culpa.
So why is it still being withheld from the defense? Is Corey planning on keep the defense in the dark throughout the trial?
Old mother Corey, made up a story
to give her poor homies some glory
but when she got there, the narrative was bare
and her poor homies got none
If this is true, then what the heck is wrong with Zimmerman's lawyer? It sounds like he's working for the prosecution.
I’m betting Zimmerman walks before trial on Stand Your Ground.
Nifong is my neighbor. Everytime I drive home, there is a litter pickup sign I see around the corner that says “Litter pickup by the Nifong Family.” I keep looking for the striped prison outfits doing litter pickup, but haven’t seen them yet!
NBPP and Spike Lee has a right to this info. /s
Monkey see, Monkey do, Holder justice!
Well, except Zimmerman. Death can be so inconvenient.
...retaliatory crimes it has generated...
No. I want him to get a not guilty verdict. If it brings on riots, it’s on the heads of every single rioter whatever happens to them. I suspect many, many people will be ready to defend themselves against rioting thugs.
The longer you hold tiger by the tail, the hungrier he gets.
Trial by ambush. Maybe she knows some nastiness about Martin she does not want to release.
You watch (P)MSNBC? Shame!
As to retaliation, there was an elderly white man that was beaten by two young black males. They apparently used a claw hammer. Then there was the elderly homeowner who was assaulted on his front porch by a group of young black boys & girls using fists, clubs, and other assorted metallic items. The fight started when he asked them to not play basketball in the street after dark. Witnesses reported hearing one of the assailants saying "that's for Travon". The police in both cases declined to file charges (no hate crime, no siree, I feel the love...)
PS Expect more to follow when the charges against Zimmerman are dropped for lack of evidence.
Zimmerman's case does not benefit from publishing anything about the case, for a million reasons. All the evidence should be shared between prosecution and defense; however the public (and most importantly the witnesses) should learn about it only in the courtroom.
If the women disobeyed the law in not releasing the evidence, she should be disbarred, period.
There is NEVER any punishment for lawyers who intentionally violate the law for political reasons.
So I went and looked up the Florida statute referenced by the media lawyer - 3.330(b) - and came up with this:
“3.330. Determination of Challenge for Cause
The court shall determine the validity of a challenge of an individual juror for cause. In making such determination the juror challenged and any other material witnesses, produced by the parties, may be examined on oath by either party. The court may consider also any other evidence material to such challenge.”
Well that sure didn’t sound like a discovery statute, let alone that there is no “b” provision. So I snooped a little further and found the Discovery statutes under section 3.220 and indeed found a relevant “b” section as noted by the media lawyer. So either the media lawyer or the reporter screwed up. Thank God for the internet.
Here’s the actual list of provisions:
“(b) Prosecutors Discovery Obligation.
(1) Within 15 days after service of the Notice of Discovery, the prosecutor shall serve a written Discovery Exhibit which shall disclose to the defendant and permit the defendant to inspect, copy, test, and photograph the following information and material within the states possession or control:
(A) a list of the names and addresses of all persons known to the prosecutor to have information that may be relevant to any offense charged or any defense thereto, or to any similar fact evidence to be presented at trial under section 90.404(2), Florida Statutes. The names and addresses of persons listed shall be clearly designated in the following categories:
(i) Category A. These witnesses shall include
(1) eye witnesses, (2) alibi witnesses and rebuttal to alibi witnesses, (3) witnesses who were present when a recorded or unrecorded statement was taken from or made by a defendant or codefendant, which shall be separately identified within this category, (4) investigating officers, (5) witnesses known by the prosecutor to have any material information that tends to negate the guilt of the defendant as to any offense charged, (6) child hearsay witnesses, and (7) expert witnesses who have not provided a written report and a curriculum vitae or who are going to testify.
(ii) Category B. All witnesses not listed in either Category A or Category C.
(iii) Category C. All witnesses who performed only ministerial functions or whom the prosecutor does not intend to call at trial and whose involvement with and knowledge of the case is fully set out in a police report or other statement furnished to the defense;
(B) the statement of any person whose name is furnished in compliance with the preceding subdivision. The term statement as used herein includes a written statement made by the person and signed or otherwise adopted or approved by the person and also includes any statement of any kind or manner made by the person and written or recorded or summarized in any writing or recording. The term statement is specifically intended to include all police and investigative reports of any kind prepared for or in connection with the case, but shall not include the notes from which those reports are compiled;
(C) any written or recorded statements and the substance of any oral statements made by the defendant, including a copy of any statements contained in police reports or report summaries, together with the name and address of each witness to the statements;
(D) any written or recorded statements and the substance of any oral statements made by a codefendant;
(E) those portions of recorded grand jury minutes that contain testimony of the defendant;
(F) any tangible papers or objects that were obtained from or belonged to the defendant;
(G) whether the state has any material or information that has been provided by a confidential informant;
(H) whether there has been any electronic surveillance, including wiretapping, of the premises of the defendant or of conversations to which the defendant was a party and any documents relating thereto;
(I) whether there has been any search or seizure and any documents relating thereto;
(J) reports or statements of experts made in connection with the particular case, including results of physical or mental examinations and of scientific tests, experiments, or comparisons; and
(K) any tangible papers or objects that the prosecuting attorney intends to use in the hearing or trial and that were not obtained from or that did not belong to the defendant.
(L) any tangible paper, objects or substances in the possession of law enforcement that could be tested for DNA.
(2) If the court determines, in camera, that any police or investigative report contains irrelevant, sensitive information or information interrelated with other crimes or criminal activities and the disclosure of the contents of the police report may seriously impair law enforcement or jeopardize the investigation of those other crimes or activities, the court may prohibit or partially restrict the disclosure.
(3) The court may prohibit the state from introducing into evidence any of the foregoing material not disclosed, so as to secure and maintain fairness in the just determination of the cause.
(4) As soon as practicable after the filing of the charging document the prosecutor shall disclose to the defendant any material information within the states possession or control that tends to negate the guilt of the defendant as to any offense charged, regardless of whether the defendant has incurred reciprocal discovery obligations.”
Here’s the link to the complete discovery statutes where I got this from:
You have it about right -—then, ‘martial law’ and no election
You ask: “Do they really think that Jackson, Sharpton, and the New Barack Pampers will forget about this and move on?”
Well, there’s another grey hoody kid that could be obamama’s if he had a son - that needs help.
Let’s see how they and the media handle this case. Any bets it will be buried?
No, I was being sarcastic.
What Good Can a Handgun Do Against An Army?
Hoosiermama - might be of interest. Too late for me to read the fine print, I’ll check in tomorrow and see if I can grasp any of it!
If so, then Angela Corey is using the same techniques as the US military, in keeping Robert Bales’ attorney from being able to get access to witnesses and evidence in Afghanistan.
Either way it’s a miscarriage of justice.
The whole thing reminds me so much of the dealings I’ve had with the Hawaii government.
If I knew how to do it I’d do a remake of The Fellowship of the Ring, where Gandalf goes to Gondor to look for the records of Isuldur about the finding of the Ring of Power. I’d show the nine Nazgul headed to the Shire in search of Baggins, and then I’d show Gandalf stuck at the door to the building in Gondor, with Janice Okubo telling him repeatedly “There are no records responsive to your request...” I’d flash to the nine finding Frodo, killing him, and taking the ring to Sauron.... all the while good ol’ Janice chirps, “There are no records responsive to your request. Go away, you vexatious requestor...”
"If I had sons they would look
like the Muslim DC Snipers!"
- Barack Hussein Obama
Lee Boyd Malvo and John Allen Muhammed
THE MUSLIM DC SNIPERS
You're on. I think it will go to trial but not to a jury. It'll be dismissed on the basis of no prima facie case for murder 2.
Was Corey served with the Notice of Discovery? Who does that - the defendant’s lawyer?
I can't find the second pic tonight - seems the media is doing everything they can to keep things under rap that shows he AND the EYE WITNESS were telling the truth
In the meantime, when is the pres. going to express his feelings over THIS young black in a gray hoodie (seems to be the uniform...notice how it's made. The hood come across the front far more than usual hooded sweatshirts - which would allow for it to cover the wearer's face much better - those dang surveilence cameras, you know.
A real reporter would ferret these things out - are these hoodies specifically designed to help hide the face? Why are so many young black perps wearing them?
Like this one - another one that ‘could be’ obamamama's son? Will the press bury it? Will Al and Jessie get all concerned?
From the language:
Looks like the state’s required to go to court before it exercises the investigative discovery exception. It’s up to the judge, not up to the prosecutor. Their mentality seems to be that they own the court, a mentality this judge hasn’t appeared to share.
It’s also clear the exculpatory evidence requirement is a stand-alone section and the timing on it has nothing to do with the timing on the disclosure requirement.
It’d be interesting to know what the cases (if any) construing the statute say, but on the face of it, it appears O’Mara could move for exclusion of every piece of evidence the prosecution hasn’t turned over and the court could grant the motion, effectively leaving the prosecution with no case.
Just blue-skying here, but the prosecution’s discovery violation would be of no moment if GZ is never arraigned.
I’ve certainly seen Libs defending St. Trayvon fail to admit this case has lots of similarities to the Duke lacrosse case. They of course refuse to see it. They don’t learn.
Certainly, early testimony (before the witnesses have had a chance to figure out what they should say) trumps later testimony.
E.g., a news report from 22 March claims the lead detective played the 911 recordings for Trayvon Martin's father shortly after the incident, and he said the voice calling for help was not his son's. Oops. If I were on the jury, and Tracy Martin swore in court that it was Trayvon screaming, my vote for Not Guilty would be set in stone. Nothing like catching a liar!
However, at this point, I can't imagine there is any "early" testimony left to be taken. So, let's let it all hang out!
Same question I've been asking for two weeks.
After Zimm’s bond hearing, it was clear to me that many of the Freepers on this thread know more details about the case than O’Mara.
Plus, the “apology” fiasco during the bond hearing.
Plus, O’Mara was on one of the Legal shows last night.
He offered a defense of Zimm’s “$200,000” problem that was so lame I cringed with disbelief.
Now, he apparently thinks the state can withhold evidence for 15 days AFTER the arraignment.
O’Mara used to be a TV legal analyst in Orlando.
I'm guessing that Zimm hired him on that fact alone.
If Zimmerman was guilty - and 99% of criminal defendants are guilty - then I would agree.
If Zimmerman was not going to testify in his own defense, then I would agree.
But the publicly available evidence clearly suggests Zimmerman is the completely innocent victim of a Hard Left political race war.
You can't just lie back and let the MSM kick you to death.
You can't just lie back and proclaim your “confidence in the legal system.”
That's how Zimm ended up with special prosecutor Angela Corey and a Second Degree Murder charge.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.