I’m sure many readers will be familiar with yesterday’s ruling in the Bundy case.
A federal judge on Wednesday declared a mistrial in the criminal case against Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy and three others for their role in a 2014 armed standoff with U.S. government agents, and rebuked prosecutors for withholding evidence from the defense.
U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro told federal prosecutors they had willfully violated evidence rules in failing to turn over pertinent documents to the defense, adding that “the failure is prejudicial” to ensuring a fair trial.
. . .
In a stinging rebuke on Wednesday, Navarro said prosecutors knew or should have known of the existence of memos from Federal Bureau of Investigation agents that might have been helpful to the defense.
Those memos and other documents, some 3,300 pages in all, were not turned over until well after an Oct. 1 deadline, and then only after repeated efforts by Bundy’s defense counsel, Navarro said.
Defense attorneys have long argued the Bundy family felt threatened by government “snipers” positioned on a hill above their ranch.
Navarro set a retrial date for Feb. 26, 2018, but whether a new trial will occur is uncertain. Acting U.S. Attorney Steven Myhre said prosecutors have yet to decide whether to pursue the case. Even if they do, defense lawyers will argue for the charges to be dismissed altogether at a hearing set for Jan. 8.
There’s more at the link.
Every Federal law enforcement officer involved swore the same oath I did:
I [name] do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.
If they swore that oath, but then violated it in the ways Judge Navarro has ruled that they did . . . their oath can’t have meant much to them. I think every one of them who betrayed it so disgracefully should face jail time – at least as much jail time as they were seeking for the defendants in this case. Nothing less would be adequate punishment.