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June 20, 2011

30

If there’s no report there’s no retort

by Andrea O'Connell

What happened today and Saturday is exactly what the State of Florida predicted would happen.

I’m not a lawyer, but it’s plain to see what went on today.  For Jose Baez,  and Casey Anthony, the fallout will be very, very serious, if the Judge applies the ultimate sanction of excluding defense witnesses.

Watching a few minutes tonight of HLN, a few talking heads, for their dramatic pleasure, were calling into question Mr. Ashton’s supposed failure to take depositions.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

The talking, babbling heads are just plain wrong.  But, drama sells.

Mr. Ashton, although he’s emotional and gets riled when Baez does not play by the rules, is following the rules; he knows what the rules are and he knows that Jose Baez is very slimy and conveniently excludes expert witness reports, which is a direct violation of court orders.

If you or I ignored a court order, we’d be in jail!  Jose Baez, on the other hand, has violated court orders, not once, not twice, but THREE times.

When a lawyer willfully violates a court order that many times, I feel confident to say that Judge Perry will charge Baez with contempt of court when this trial is all over.

Contempt of Court is a criminal charge, requiring a trial.  Baez will need to be represented by counsel.  It is very serious.

Not only that, Jeff Ashton is proposing sanctions against Baez. Previously, when Ashton requested sanctions, the Court required that Baez pay fines.

There’s a big difference between sanctions and contempt.  Contempt is very serious.

If Judge Perry charges Baez with contempt, the penalty could be revocation of the law license, fines, suspension, remedial classes, or jail time.

What happened today was NOT Jeff Ashton’s fault

Granted Mr. Ashton and Mr. Baez have a lousy working relationship, and though there are two sides to every story, I can tell you that Mr. Ashton is one hell of a lawyer, and he plays by the rules.

Mr. Baez, on the other hand, ignores the rules.  Baez doesn’t like the rules of the criminal court, so he skirts them.

Baez said over and over today that Mr. Ashton had all the time in the world to take depositions, but he did not do it. Baez told the Court that Ashton has refused to take the deposition of Rodriquez and another expert witness regarding trace DNA.

Baez asked Judge Perry for sanctions against the State since they have not taken depositions, claiming the State “chose not to do so.”

If there’s no report there’s no retort

What Baez conveniently forgets are the rules!

There can not be a deposition of expert witnesses UNLESS THERE IS A REPORT FILED!  (Sorry for yelling!)

This is where Baez is making up his own rules. As a result of the defense failing to provide the State (back in 2009, 2010, and 2011), with discovery, the Court was forced to lay down rules requiring that the defense provide expert reports.

As Judge Perry reminded Baez today, there were previously two Court orders on this matter.  The first order was dated December 10, 2010.   See the court order:  Order Granting State’s Motion For Clarification To Compel Compliance With Order For additional Discovery

In this order, Judge Perry laid out, in plain English, what Baez must provide:

  1. The expert’s curriculum vitae or qualifications of the experts;
  2. The expert’s field of expertise or medical specialty;
  3. A statement of the specific subjects upon which the expert will testify and offer opinions;
  4. The substance of the facts to which the expert is expected to testify; and
  5. A summary of the expert’s opinions and the grounds for each opinion.

When the above Court order failed to move Mr. Baez into action, Jeff Ashton, since he is handling the expert witnesses, was livid and called for sanctions.

Judge Perry agreed with Mr. Ashton.  Fines were imposed, and Court orders were re-written very specifically with regards to the reports required.  These reports, ruled the court, must contain the following:

2. The defense shall provide written reports to the state from all expert witnesses which shall include the following information:  a complete statement of opinions the witnesses will express and the reasons for those opinions, and any data or other information considered by the witnesses in forming their opinions or conclusions.

The above order from Judge Perry, on Jan. 6, 2011, outlines what Baez must do to comply with the court, and contains the sanctions imposed.  This order is contained in the link below.  See the Court order: Order Granting States Motion for Sanctions – Motion to Compel

“This Court Doesn’t Make Threats” ~ Judge Belvin Perry

Judge Perry advised Baez that he will not threaten, he will apply the rules of law as they apply.  And, if anyone knows the rules of law, Judge Perry does.

It must be noted that because of Jose Baez, the State of Florida’s case is hampered and hurt.  Discovery is a reciprocal process and when one side does not follow the rules, it results in ambush of the other side.

Jeff Ashton cannot take depositions if he does not have reports.  So, here we are, in the middle of the trial, and Baez is lying, and disobeying court orders to gain advantage.

A trial is supposed to be a search for the truth.  Baez does not have to prove anything, that is the State’s burden. Yet, he makes bold assertions about George Anthony, drowning and other such nonsense, attempting to prove Casey Anthony did not act alone.  Of course, these assertions were made in opening statements, which does not have to be true – though most lawyers lay their case out as truthfully as they can in opening, it is NOT evidence.  (By the way, the only way these allegations can be raised are by Casey Anthony.)

In reality, the only thing the defense is proving is they are burdened with a guilty client who is represented by a lawyer who will make up the rules as he goes along.

The truth and Mr. Baez are strangers.

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30 Comments Post a comment
  1. Jun 20 2011

    Where is Lee?

    Reply
    • Jun 21 2011

      Hi Donna… Do you mean Dr. Henry Lee who was supposed to work for a crate of oranges? Well, he’s MIA….maybe he found some ethics in his back pocket

      Reply
  2. Jun 20 2011

    I so hope he loses his license. He has made a mockery of the court and of justice. I don’t want to see him in law practice anymore because of it.

    I was shaking my head in disbelief that Baez would be so bold as to falsely acuse Ashton as if HHJP suffers from memory loss. I wonder if holding off on dealing with Baez until after the trial will keep him from wanting to cause a mistrial. He may not be in any hurry for what HHJP will do concerning him.

    Reply
    • dee
      Jun 21 2011

      He is an embarrassment!!

      Reply
  3. Jun 20 2011

    You can tell Jose came up with Casey’s defense. Cindy left the ladder down. George molested her (GROSS) Lee wanted to be just like daddy. But for all these people’s actions Caylee would still be alive.

    Fast forward to Saturday and to today and it is Ashton’s fault that Jose is pulling fast ones. Ashton did not do his work. He did not do depositions. Ashton is being a big baby your Honor. Jose imo is a complete embarrassment to all Lawyers.

    Now seriously where did he buy his License to practice Law? Online or at Walmart?

    Reply
  4. Jun 20 2011

    Today, despite no jury, I found myself entranced watching Ms. Anthony’s facial, and hand-wringing movements (via youtube from 1947Sierra’s channel). I do believe I saw a panic building, dawning realization of the man she is trusting with her very life. Truly, a replica of her (I even think i may have smelled fear).

    Reply
  5. whistlersmother
    Jun 20 2011

    I seriously could not believe my ears this morning…if I was Jeff Ashton I would have jumped out of my seat and kicked his a#$! His statements about the actions of Jeff Ashton was so derogatory and untrue that I imagine everyone in there was just sitting with their mouths open. I have decided not to EVER watch InSession again. Those Bozo legal analysts are incredibly stupid, they state that Baez is right! whatever this case has really brought to light a lot of scum in the world.

    Reply
    • dee
      Jun 22 2011

      Basically, two things are going on here. First InSession consist of experienced lawyers who do not always fully explain their opinions. On the one had Baez is correct. Ordinarily, a Defense Attorney does not have to submit the names of his Expert Witnesses and their opinions to the state. Instead, the defense attorney simply submits the names of his expert witnesses and the Prosecution takes their depositions to determine their opinions. In this instance, it appears that Baez failed to even submit the names of his expert witnesses to the Prosecution, early on in this case, preventing the prosecution from even knowing who the defense expert witnesses would be in this case. Therefore, Judge Perry entered an Order, which he has every right to do, requiring that Baez not only provide the expert witnesses names, but their expert opinions, as well. It appears to me that Baez did not like the Order and therefore failed to comply with the Order. That is a big “NO, NO” for not only an Attorney but any person who is Ordered to do anything by a Judge. If Baez did not like the Order the right action would be to appeal the Order, to seek relief, but then again ole Baez tends make up rules as he goes…so now the ultimate issue he will have to address after the trial is, whether he should even retain his law license.

      Reply
  6. Jun 21 2011

    I’ve read in the blogosphere that today was baez’ best day. 😆

    Reply
  7. Jun 21 2011

    Wow! Andrea, I am shocked beyond belief, that Baez doesn’t have a legal obligation to “prove” his opening statements! I got to go to Wal-mart, I need a job. What isle do you think “Lawyer’s License” is on?

    Reply
  8. NancyB
    Jun 21 2011

    Excellent post that puts this in perspective and made me feel better to read it. That pig of a person, Mark Geragos was on some show today (can’t remember) insisting that it is NO big deal what happened to Baez and will amount to nada. Hmm, maybe that is because he plays out of the same dirty play book.

    Hey Sherry, I agree that the defense’s theory of the case was all made up by Baez. One of the numerous details that do not hold up to simple logic is if George had wanted to hide the drowning so that Cindy wouldn’t have a fit and “never forgive Casey,” then wouldn’t he pull the ladder back down again so that Cindy would not find it up? Why try to hide a drowning and then leave the ladder up for Cindy to find? Baez is slime.

    Reply
    • dee
      Jun 21 2011

      Good point.
      Mark is a Florida attorney just like Baez. He can not make a disparaging comment about another member of the Bar, so while I am no fan of his, he is restrained.

      Reply
  9. Addie
    Jun 21 2011

    Judge Perry has had to teach law during this trial ( Baez ) which is NOT right. Jeff Ashton, bring the fine professional that he is, is tired of it, rightfully so.
    Judge Perry (IMO) will no longer allow Baez to get by with his deceit and court room antics. The law is the law and Judge Perry has been very lax with Baez up to this point. Ineffective counsel ? NOT in my opinion. Arrogance/Ignorance on the part of Baez is what I call it. I really hope Judge Perry slams ( not slaps ) Baez for not having any better judgement than to even try to pull off some of the things he has during this trial.
    I was watching on WFTV and Bill Sheaffer made a good point about the heigth of Caey’s chair. I had never noticed it, but her chair at counsel table sits way lower than anyone’s. He said this is so she will appear smaller, more childlike to the jurors. I guess all these type things are fairly common, but it’s a shame the juror’s aren’t allowed to see the REAL Casey.
    I think so highly of the entire State team and Judge Perry. It’s a SHAME that Baez is “trying” to make such a mockery of these very qualified, such professional people .

    Reply
  10. colleen
    Jun 21 2011

    I too was shocked (don’t know why I would be by now) at Baez’s statement regarding Ashton. I wasn’t sure if Baez was just slimey or stupid. Now, I’ve concluded that he is both..stupid and slimey. He really is unethical.

    Reply
    • dee
      Jun 21 2011

      Colleen, I love the part about Baez randomly sending the expert witness up to Ashton’s office for a depositon. That is sooo funny! Depositions are planned encounters. No attorney that even has a slight clue about how to practice law would conduct an interview/deposition without the proper preparation.

      Reply
      • colleen
        Jun 21 2011

        Dee, and, not sure if you saw this Tuesday morning, Baez was questioning the expert witness about when he went to Ashton’s office for the deposition. Baez asked him was Ashton “polite” to him. And……………..what does Ashton’s manner’s have to do with the deposition??? Baez really is a disgrace to the legal profession. Lawyers get a bad rap as it is.

      • dee
        Jun 22 2011

        I saw it…so Lovely.(LOL)
        Ashton was thoroughly entertained!

  11. Jun 21 2011

    I can’t believe his nose didn’t start growing right in front of the cameras for all to see what a liar he is!!!

    Reply
    • Jun 21 2011

      Another Andrea! I’m glad there are at least two of us here! That nose of his grows everyday, doesn’t it?

      Reply
  12. dee
    Jun 21 2011

    Andrea,

    Your assessment is so correct-you are spot on.
    I am an Attorney and I can assure you that Baez understood the Order and elected not to comply. I know that, any lay person observing this trial (such as you, Andrea) knows that and Jeff Ashton knows that…so the best favor Baez could have done for himself was to reframe from speaking about the Contempt of Court charge, since the Judge had delayed the action. But, loving to hear himself talk, it was impossible for Baez to simply zip his lips, instead he dug a bigger and wider hole for himself, by asserting to Judge Perry that the Order is “simple”. Which I took as an admission that he understood the Court Order. And of course, loving to hear himself speak, Baez could not stop there, so he went even further to assert that his violation of the Order was a “minor issue”. And, Baez even noted that he knew that the experts had opinions, but the opinions were “common”. (Expert witnesses do not give “common” opinions.) And he closed his rant by of course blaming the entire violation on Jeff Ashton.
    When I listened to Baez, defending his actions his defenses for himself were the same type and kind of discombobulated smoke screen he is asserting for Casey Anthony.

    Reply
    • Jun 21 2011

      Dee! You’re an attorney?! That is fantastic! Thank you for your comments. I’m glad that I got it right. 🙂

      I really enjoy doing the research and thinking about the law and the constitution, as they apply to this case. (I enjoy researching constitutional issues.) But….I don’t know nearly as much as a lawyer would, but I’m sure trying!

      It is shameful how Baez is laughing at the law – not caring about it one bit. It’s unbelievable. Every day gets more absurd than the day before. Sometimes I can’t find the words to express how insane this case is….

      Reply
  13. offthecuff
    Jun 21 2011

    So how is Casey getting all of her media support? Who is paying for it?

    Reply
    • Jun 21 2011

      Hi Off the cuff… The media? They are like rabid dogs… they love this case and love the drama. So, it’s free!

      Reply
  14. Jun 21 2011

    I just hope that Casey doesn’t end up walking; or being tried again for Baez’ incompetence.

    Reply
  15. Jun 21 2011

    Andrea, I owe an apology to you, & your blog, in reference to my comment regarding a “lawyers license”. It is in extreme poor taste on my part. I am normally well behaved, lol. No excuses, I truly do apologize.

    Reply
    • Jun 21 2011

      i thought it was funny! 😆

      Reply
    • Jun 21 2011

      Oh my, Rah Rah, no apology needed or required! My goodness, we all feel the same as you! 🙂 Don’t worry one bit – you are welcome to say anything you’d like here.

      Reply
  16. Jun 21 2011

    First lucid thought upon wakening was the trial. Second thought was my comment, and it dogged me all day.

    Reply
  17. jms
    Jun 22 2011

    Jose and Casey are meant for each other. When things don’t go their way they lie or break the law. They both act like 2 year olds.

    Reply
  18. Jun 22 2011

    Thank you Andrea, for accepting my apology. I promise to behave! You are doing an excellant blog and I enjoy reading it. Your love for the law (and Shakespear!) is a passionate thing to see, ~and contagious to boot!

    Reply

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