Court Calls A Do Over In Terror Hearings After Failure To Record

from the are-they-allowed-to-change-arguments? dept

We covered how court staffers, totally spooked by FBI agents sweeping the court room for recording devices, failed to record the public portion of oral arguments in an important terrorism case (against Adel Daoud), meaning that there was no official recording or transcript of the hearing (part of which was also held in secret). But now, the court has called for a rare "do over" on the public portion of the hearing.
A federal appeals court in Chicago has rescheduled oral arguments in a terrorism case after courtroom staff failed to record a significant hearing.

The U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a notice on Friday saying it would rehear arguments June 11 in the case against Adel Daoud, who's accused of trying to set off a bomb near a Chicago bar in 2012.
So, um, what? The original was a dress rehearsal? Do they get to make different arguments, or are they expected to basically repeat the script they did a week earlier? Will it play out like an awkward re-enactment? And, most importantly, will Judge Posner, once again yell "Look! You answer my questions, not your questions!" at the lawyers?

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    identicon
    S. T. Stone, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 5:43am

    Id say that our court system has become a joke, but a joke typically has a punchline.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Brandon, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 5:46am

      Re:

      The punchline is that unless they're just literally repeating word for word for the benefit of the court reporters, there could be a claim of double jeopardy. Not that it'll actually fly.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Michael, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 8:23am

      Re:

      I'm pretty sure that WE are the punchline.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Michael, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 5:46am

    I am still baffled as to why the FBI was allowed to sweep the courtroom for bugs.

    If someone was using a bug to listen into public proceedings, is that really so bad? And if the FBI is conducting business in the courtroom that they think needs to be kept secret, shouldn't they ask the court to verify that the courtroom is secure? Am I allowed to bring my own bug detector into the courtroom?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Jun 9th, 2014 @ 5:47am

    Maybe they'll let the defense actually hear portions of the case so that the accused can get a fair trial...

    BWHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHA just kidding.

    Terrorists are so bad we just suspend all of those rules meant only for Good People(tm) (as we secretly decide if they are good or not).

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile), Jun 9th, 2014 @ 7:12am

    I hope the do-over is handled improv style with suggestions from the audience.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 7:18am

      Re:

      Judge- "you object"
      defense- "excuse me?"
      judge - "you're now supposed to say 'i object'"
      defnse- "no, that was prosecutor"
      prosecutor- "i didn't object, you object"
      judge- "quiet you two, this isn't the three stooges"

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Michael, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 7:42am

    I blame the video games

    This is all because of the video games. People have become so accustomed to being able to simply click the 'reset' button on their video games that they have started to assume that it is ok in regular life.

    Forgot to record the court case? Ok, let's just reset.

    These video games are ruining our society. We need to stop them - for the children!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 7:58am

      Re: I blame the video games

      It is a bit more important than that, without a recording or transcript of proceedings the court cannot prove that it followed the correct procedures during the trial. Therefore only the re-do matters when it comes to an appeal.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      •  
        icon
        sorrykb (profile), Jun 9th, 2014 @ 8:19am

        Re: Re: I blame the video games

        Anonymous Coward wrote:
        without a recording or transcript of proceedings the court cannot prove that it followed the correct procedures during the trial.

        Wouldn't failing to maintain a record of the proceedings count as not following the correct procedure? How is this entire case not tainted by this? (Of course, the entire case is already tainted by secret proceedings but...) Is there precedent for such a "do-over" in a trial?

         

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Personanongrata, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 8:30am

    It's Still a Disgrace redux or not.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    zip, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 8:58am

    unfair advantage to the prosecution

    It would appear that this do-over could easily give an unfair advantage to the prosecution -- who now get to re-craft their arguments based on knowing how the defense will respond.

    It's MUCH easier for the prosecution to revamp it's arguments (and still appear credible) than for the defense -- which is basically stuck with whatever alibi was used the first time around.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    alternatives(), Jun 9th, 2014 @ 9:39am

    So, um, what?

    The Courts have been broken for decades.

    MAy 1995 ABA - The lies have it. $-+ year DA for Milwaukee Counry points out how lying in court (perjury) is ignored.

    If the Court system is unable to address lying in Court - a simple "do over" is progress.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 10:28am

    I was sort of confused about how a mistrial could be handled if it was a judicial mistake, so I looked it up.
    I'm certainly not a lawyer, but it sounds like this will be fought against: link
    If the mistrial results from judicial or prosecutorial misconduct, a retrial will be barred. In United States v. Jorn, 400 U.S. 470, 91 S. Ct. 547, 27 L. Ed. 2d 543 (1971), the Supreme Court held that reprosecuting the defendant would constitute double jeopardy because the judge had abused his discretion in declaring a mistrial. On his own motion, the judge had declared a mistrial to enable government witnesses to consult with their own attorneys.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 11:50am

    Phew, does that mean that threat made to me that was gonna make me do what they want and get what they want, that was'nt recorded ......is that a do-over too!?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 9th, 2014 @ 5:02pm

    So the FBI, Judge, and Prosecutor held a secret court room proceeding with no records. Then discovered that doing so is illegal, and the defense could call a mistrial and the defendant could walk free. So now the FBI, Judge, and Prosecutor want to have a do-over trial and pretend it never happened?

    WTF! I stand by my original assessment about these secret trials in secret courts, bound by secret laws and executive memo orders. In other words, tyrannical justice.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    icon
    Coyne Tibbets (profile), Jun 9th, 2014 @ 9:47pm

    Prosecutor's Nightmare before Christmas

    'Twas the night before trial;
    And outside the court,
    Prosecutors were panicked,
    That the case would abort.

    They'd held a long hearing;
    To grind 'neath their heel,
    The defendant's full Rights;
    But they gave him appeal.

    The hearing was held,
    Without an epistle,
    A procedural error that,
    Risked a dismissal.

    "What shall we do?"
    A desperate cry;
    A solution occurs,
    "The hearing we'll retry."

    "It just didn't happen,
    "Redone it will be;
    "Because we respect,
    "The Rights of the free."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
Advertisement
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Chat
Techdirt Reading List
Advertisement
Recent Stories
Advertisement
Support Techdirt - Get Great Stuff!

Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.