United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Terre Haute Division
JANE MAGNUS-STINSON, District Judge.
On June 3, 2014, the Court held a hearing on Defendant Joshua Waldman's Motion to Dismiss the Indictment. [Filing No. 44-5.] Mr. Waldman appeared in person pro se and by standby counsel William Dazey, Jr., and the Government appeared by counsel James Warden. The Court Reporter was Jean Knepley. The Court heard testimony from Jason Cruze, Lieutenant Deborah Moore and Lieutenant Scott Young.
In his Motion to Dismiss, Mr. Waldman alleges that the Government has violated the Speedy Trial Act, 18 U.S.C. § 3161, and seeks dismissal of his indictment to remedy the violation, [Filing No. 44-5 at 1]. For the following reasons, the Court now DENIES Mr. Waldman's Motion to Dismiss.
A. The Charges Against Mr. Waldman
Mr. Waldman is alleged to have assaulted Officer Jason Buescher on June 30, 2013, at the Federal Correctional Complex in Terre Haute, Indiana. [Filing No. 1 at 1.] The Government is pursuing a charge of assault on an officer, under 18 U.S.C. § 111. [Filing No. 1 at 1.] Mr. Waldman argues he struck Officer Buescher in self-defense. [Filing No. 44-4 at 4-15.]
B. Mr. Waldman's Motions to Continue
Mr. Waldman was arrested on October 17, 2013, [Filing No. 11 at 1], and his first trial date was set for December 16, 2013, [Filing No. 8 at 2]. On November 5, 2013, Mr. Waldman submitted a Motion to Continue the pretrial conference and trial date stating a need for additional time to adequately prepare. [Filing No. 15 at 1-2.] The Court granted Mr. Waldman's motion for a continuance, setting the pretrial conference for February 20, 2014, and the trial for March 3, 2014. [Filing No. 16 at 1-2.] On February 18, 2014, at a status conference with both parties, Mr. Waldman orally moved to continue the February pretrial conference and trial date. He had just waived his right to counsel and sought more time to adequately investigate alleged video footage of the assault, the identity of inmate witnesses, and the possibility of filing an insanity defense. [Filing No. 22 at 3.] The Court granted Mr. Waldman's Motion, finding that the ends of justice were served by allowing Mr. Waldman more time to prepare, and set the pretrial conference for June 19, 2014, and the trial for June 30, 2014. [Filing No. 22 at 3.] Meanwhile, other discovery issues were brought to the Court's attention and resolved, and it was revealed that contrary to earlier representations to the Court, mass interview forms existed, some of which related to Mr. Waldman's case. These forms were made available to Mr. Waldman and standby counsel in late March or early April 2014. On May 19, 2014, at a telephonic status conference, Mr. Waldman again orally moved to continue the trial date, seeking additional time to investigate inmate witnesses. [Filing No. 42 at 2.] The Court granted Mr. Waldman's Motion, and rescheduled the final pretrial conference for October 3, 2014, and the trial date for October 14, 2014, again finding that the interests of justice were served by affording him additional time to conduct his investigation and prepare for trial. [Filing No. 42 at 3.]
C. Mr. Waldman's Pending Motion to Dismiss the Indictment
Also at the May 19, 2014 telephonic status conference, Mr. Waldman orally sought dismissal of his indictment to remedy the Government's alleged violation of the Speedy Trial Act. He followed up his request with a written motion, [Filing No. 44-5]. Mr. Waldman argues that the Government's belated discovery disclosure counted against the speedy trial clock, thus impermissibly delaying his trial. [Filing No. 44-5 at 1.] He claims that during pretrial discovery, the Government delayed disclosure of testimonial reports that are roughly 800 pages in length and some are apparently favorable to Mr. Waldman. [Filing No. 46 at 2.] Though the Bureau of Prisons prepared the reports in July 2013, the Government did not disclose them to Mr. Waldman until March 2014. [Filing No. 46 at 2.] The Government concedes that its discovery disclosure was delayed but, in its defense, argues that the delay was inadvertent and that Mr. Waldman has not been prejudiced as a result. [Filing No. 46 at 3.] The Government argues that a continuance, not dismissal, is the appropriate remedy for Mr. Waldman. [Filing No. 46 at 3.]
FINDINGS OF FACT
A. Speedy ...