I was back in Hampton fixing teeth today, but John Wilburn was able to attend the trial and sent me very thorough notes from which to prepare a report.
A ‘Jury Visit’ to the home was scheduled for today, but was delayed until tomorrow pending a motion by Prosecutor Ebert asking that the judge and attorney’s visit first to be certain there is no ‘prejudicial evidence’ which the jury might see. I’m not sure what he is concerned about, it is my understanding that the signs supporting Frederick covered by the signatures of his friends and neighbors, have already been taken down and stored.
Defense Attorney Broccoletti and Prosecutor Ebert sparred again over the re-enactment video, with the defense wishing to use it to impeach testimony from De. Roberts and Ebert arguing that as the prosecutor’s work product it could not be used fr that purpose. Judge Arrington will rule on that at a later time.
The jury was brought in and Det. Edward Winkelspecht, the officer who had left for Atlanta for BATF training, testified about the pre-raid briefing and his role in the raid. His account was similar to the other officers, noting that when the bottom panel of the door was broken out, he could see a pit bull inside and his attention was focused on the dog when he heard what he later learned was a gunshot, but what to him sounded like someone snapping their finger.
Again, it seems that house has some pretty good sound deadening properties, with gunshots not being recognized as such by trained police officers and a Pit Bull and Labrador Retriever being described as ‘small, annoying dogs’ by Det. Roerts last week.
When Frederick came out and surrendered, Det. Sgt. Chambers assigned Det. Winkelspecht to interview him and red him his Miranda Rights. The Interview was taped and the transcript ran ten pages, but the Prosecution does not want it introduced as they described it as ‘self-serving.’ On cross examination, Winkelspecht, described Frederick as logical and coherent, the the answers corresponding to the questions asked. So much for ‘stoned out of his mind’ and ‘drug crazed rage.’
Forensics Technician Neil Rogers produced the door with the missing panel.
Det. Meinhart (sp?) introduced a number of items recovered in the search of the house and garage, including small amounts of marijuana, a smoking device, literature on marijuana and, in the attic, un-assembled parts of grow lights. From the attic of the garage, tubs for two hydroponic setups and other supporting accessories.
On cross examination, Det. Meinhart (sp?) explained hydroponics production of marijuanna and that one mature plant produced 8 to 12 ounces of smoking material.
I know nothing of the business of cultivating marijuana, but this evidence at most would establish that Frederick had at some past time grown some quantity of marijuana, but I have no idea if this was enough of a setup for a commercial, as opposed to personal use, operation. In any case, no cash was found, nor any money in bank accounts not attributable to Frederick’s legal employment.
The Confidential Informant/Burglar, Steven Wright was scheduled for after lunch, but Defense Attorney Broccoletti asked that the Prosecution be barred from asking Wright about any past activity which might have occurred but was not prosecuted that was not related to the current charges, as such testimony might be prejudicial while having no probative value on the current charges. Precedents were argued by both sides and Judge Arrington will rule before Wright testifies.
Were I the prosecution, I would hope the jury forget Wright even existed, as his testimony would also bring into question the means by which the warrant was obtained and possibly contradict testimony by Det. Roberts, leaving the prosecution with the task of convincing the jury Wright lied to the police, continued to lie about what he told them but was telling the truth with respect to Frederick. The Prosecutors, having already destroyed their personal credibility, would find that a tough sell.