People v. Name Deleted

Motion to Permit the Defense to Put on a Defense


Once in awhile, I get involved in a case where the procedures and rulings of the court just about drive me over the edge. I will occasionally write a motion which, based on the prior rulings, I know is nearly certainly going to be denied.

When that happens, I get creative with the motion titles. There's just something very satisfying about hearing the court -- when it is clearly ignoring the law -- state openly that "the defense motion for a fair trial is denied," or, as in the case with this motion, "the motion to permit the defense to put on a defense is denied."

This motion involved a case where because of a DEFENSE motion, certain areas of testimony had been deemed off-limits by the courts. However, in this trial, the circumstances changed repeatedly as the court continued giving in more and more to the requests of the prosecution. Ultimately, an unavailable witness was given use immunity and forced to testify for the prosecution. However, the defense was precluded from calling her as a witness BASED ON THE PRIOR DEFENSE MOTION which had been granted prior to trial; the area the defense wished to question the witness about had, because she was unavailable, been deemed off-limits.

Pointing out this fact had no effect on the court. We were left with no option but to make as clear a record as possible and enjoy our treat where we could get it: by having the court openly state that "the defense motion to allow the defense to put on a defense is denied."

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Reference Info:State, 9th Circuit, California | United States

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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