Motions to shield relevant evidence of Government culpability from jury…
The US Attorneys motion the Court to preclude key evidence in the first Bundy Ranch trial. The sixteen (16) page filing seeks to block the introduction of certain evidence because it would act in favor of defendants. Subsequently, three full pages delineate a convoluted argument against any evidence that could introduce the possibility of jury nullification, referring to it as “a violation of a juror’s oath to apply the law as instructed by the court.” (Citing Merced v. McGrath, 2004). In short, the Government fears jury nullification and subsequently wishes the jury to be ignorant of any collateral evidence that might persuade them to acquit.
First Malheur Refuge Trial…
The Government motions that the Court block any and all references to the First Malheur Refuge Trial. They argue that because the case involved none of the Tier 3 defendants, that the outcome of that case is immaterial in Nevada. As a result, any attempt to reference the case, according to the Government, constitutes hearsay.
The Malheur Trial is very relevant in a couple of ways. First, and foremost, counts 2 and 3 of the Bundy Ranch indictment are identical to charges in the Malheur case. While the circumstances of the surrounding the charges are inherently different, one aspect is not. Specifically, District of Oregon dismissed the 924(c) enhancement of the conspiracy charge. The District of Nevada refuses to follow suit. Jurors will never know that other co-defendants in a different trial tier did not have to face the 924(c) enhancement in another district.
As a side note, there is a Second Malheur Refuge Trial about to soon begin. The second tier of defendants will not only face the same charges in which a jury acquitted their co-defendants, the Government added several misdemeanor charges that the first trial tier did not face.
The Government’s criminal activity…
Probably the most egregious claim in the filing is the motion to preclude “perceived misconduct” by Federal Agents. There is nothing more relevant to the defense of these men than the criminal aggressive posture of the Government on April 12th 2014. The Government wishes for the Court to suppress any testimony that might indicate that Bundy Ranch operation was excessive in nature. Additionally, they motion that the court block any references to agents being “excessively equipped or acting militaristically (sic)”.
The Bundy Ranch case arises in large part from the misconduct of the Government. They pointed weapons at unarmed people… over cows. Agents threw women to the ground. Lawful protesters received shots by tasers. Finally, after deciding to cease the roundup, they announced their intention to subject men, women, and minor children to lethal force.
Every detail related to the Government’s behavior is relevant. As such, the attempt to block this evidence means that the Government fears jury nullification. Consequently, the motion affirms what many of us already know; the Government has much to hide.
Other (non-Government) opinions…
The US Attorneys ask the court to block any reference to opinions contrary to their own set of embellished allegations. Specifically, any statement by a third party, referencing “hearsay statements of public officials”. Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval heavily criticized the Government’s use of “First Amendment Areas”. Additionally, then Sheriff Doug Gillespie (who was critical of Cliven Bundy as well) blamed the escalation on the Bureau of Land Management.
Gillespie said the BLM deserves blame for escalating the situation, ignoring his advice, dismissing his warnings and even lying about their operation. – Las Vegas Review Journal
Since the Government fears jury nullification, they asked the Court to shield from the jury any opinion contrary to their own construction of the unfolding of events.
Government Fears Jury Nullification
The Government essentially wishes to be able to prosecute any defendant without having to answer for its own behavior. This is Constitutionally abhorrent. Defendants in this case lawfully exercised 1st Amendment rights. Additionally, defendants in this case were in lawful possession of weapons on public property. No citizen has to provide to the Government a reason for lawfully exercising Constitutionally affirmed God-given rights. The Government, however, should have to answer for Daniel Love’s tactical deployment of militarized “land management” agents against lawful protesters. This is the essence of the escalation of events that day.
Should the Government succeed, they will ensure that their actions are inadmissible in court. They will gain judicial approval to act outside of the law. They will obtain affirmation that they operate with impunity in the dissemination of tyrannical governance.
The Government seeks for tyranny to become law.