Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Looking Good for Allen Steed

I didn't report on it at the time, but as the day (rumored) for Judge Beacham's decision approaches, I thought I might weigh in now.
This is an opinion of course, based on the facts, and I'm not the judge. In the past when I've made similar statements, I've been lambasted by the less than honest for making unqualified remarks. These remarks, are qualified.
The St. George Spectrum - " 'How does the state file information in September 2007 that they allege happened in May 2001?' (Allen Steed's attorney) asked.

(Jim) Bradshaw chipped away at the prosecution's contention the report was first made in January 2005, when Wall's boyfriend sat down to breakfast with Mohave County (Arizona) Attorney's Office investigator Gary Engels at a Hurricane restaurant and informed him of the allegations, arguing Engels is not certified as a law enforcement officer and the discussion did not constitute a formal report."
It's pretty simple, what the defense is arguing; there is a law, there is what is known as a legal report of a crime, there is a time limit. The applicable law that governs this case for reporting states a time limit for a specific kind of report. That report was not made in that time frame.

The ugly truth is that if Jim Bradshaw is right, particularly on the time frame issue. Regardless of what actually happened, there is a limit and it's been exceeded if what the prosecution calls a report, is not a report in the Court's eyes. The gavel bangs and it's "next case." The very fact that this hearing was held is proof that the defense has a credible contention. Even the prosecution, concedes this:
"(Brock) Belnap acknowledged that if the court does not regard the comments made to Engels and his subsequent vague e-mail to Belnap's office about a child bride as a report to law enforcement, then the case was not filed in time to fulfill the statute.

'If that is not sufficient, we would have to concede it is not sufficient,' he said.

The burden rests with the prosecution to prove the statute was fulfilled."
It really is refreshing to get out of Texas. Both Arizona and Utah seem to possess less hell bent for leather minds. Less "damning of the torpedoes," less "full speed ahead," or "come hell or high water." In Texas you get the impression folks think they're going to "make it happen." That's pretty macho. In St. George, Brock is honest about his chances.

I don't know the Judge in this case, but you figure he is looking over his shoulder at who will be second guessing him on appeal. He could ignore the facts and rule the way he wants to, but it will come back to haunt him, and he knows it.
"(Fifth District Court Judge G. Rand) Beacham said he would issue a written decision on the arguments at an undetermined time.

'I just have to satisfy myself that I have corralled the facts,' he said.

Belnap said a ruling in the Steed case will not directly affect the Jeffs case, although 'they would be free to make whatever arguments they wanted.' "
Belnap acknowledges that though strictly speaking, the lack of a rapist doesn't legally preclude the existence of an accomplice, it will get dicey for holding Warren's conviction together, if Allen Steed is not convicted. Charges not reported in the correct time frame means there will never be, a rapist.

It will look ridiculous to the public. It will not look like justice. It is also a case of special circumstance, and Warren can't be said in this case, no matter what the law says, to have conspired to commit an act that didn't take place, particularly if the primary couldn't be convicted because the crime was never reported in the first place.

It doesn't look to me, like reporting took place. The frothing opposition says to me often, that I'm an idiot, that the law doesn't require a perpetrator, for there to be an accomplice. Well kids, the law says a report has to be filed in a proper manner, in the proper time frame, with proper documentation to the proper kind of person(s).

It doesn't look like that happened. I say Allen Steed wins. Probably right here, and right now. If not, he'll win this later.



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8 comments:

Ron in Houston said...

FWIW, I don't know about Utah, but in Texas an investigator for a prosecuting attorney is considered law enforcement.

The Pharisee said...

I know only enough about Utah law, to know that Utah law is different, and that the manner, and the individual (an Arizona LE member) were not what were described in Utah law.

That doesn't mean Allen wins, I am as you know, hardly a lawyer. It does seem like Brock is ready to take it on the chin though, he's not sure.

Jam Inn said...

What can be 'WON' here is that the first timeframe is not conforming, as the Prosecutor noted,"While the State alleges these were subsequent acts of non-consenual intercourse, the State would like to proceed with this prosecution based upon the first time Mr. Steed had sexual intercourse with Elissa Wall". [Footnote 1 -Pg.2 of Memorandum Opposing Motion to Dismiss for Statute of Limitations, dated 08/31/2009].
If this timeframe is ruled out other timeframes will be used.

Win on this motion but not on the subsequent charge being filed if the first timeframe is determined to not conform.

The Pharisee said...

Like I said before Jam, Brock is already talking like he's going to have his hat handed to him.

That doesn't mean it's won or lost from either side's perspective, but it sure means that the outcome is not certain. Brock knows that, and has said so, for the record.

In Walther's court, she would have slammed Bradshaw, elbowed him aside and charged ahead.

Judge Beacham and Judge Conn are both showing us what evidence plays like in a real court of law, not the sandbox of Walther's courtroom.

I_hate_bigots said...

This whole accomplice to a crime thing gets confusing with time frames.

Let's say you have a Native American leader who encourages a 10year old to grow and smoke pot. He tells him it's his spiritual duty, explains how to grow, ect.

Twenty years later, the 10 year old is now 30 and gets busted for growing pot.

When does the accomplice's (the Leader's) statute start. At the time he encourages the crime or at the time the crimed is committed?

I have asked this before and no one could come up with an answer.

Ron, do you want to take a guess?

duaneh1 said...

"Ihatebigots", if the state can't use this time frame I suppose could
use the time frame that included Warren Jeffs advising Elissa to "submit" to her husband in mind and soul and whereas allegedly Allen Steed promptly "raped" her against her will. So the "time difference" in this scenario is rather close. I'm speculating the State doesn't want to use this "time frame" because up until this alleged "rape", Elissa Wall freely admitted that she had willing sex with Allen on multiple occasions in order to curry favors from him....making her car payment, spending money, and other goodies. In a trial, this could seriously weaken the state's case against Allen since it wasn't "her first time".
I'm wondering, since they weren't "legally" married, can Elissa be charged with prostitution?

The Pharisee said...

Probably not Duane, the statute for reporting has expired.

kbp said...

I have to admit not having followed this case as closely as others and being due a refresher course here. JI quotes; "...the State would like to proceed with this prosecution based upon the first time Mr. Steed had sexual intercourse with Elissa Wall"."

I recall some various times mentioned, but thought we were down to the last one possible now. If what JI quotes is what the prosecutor wishes to do, was there any "formal reports" within the time limits on those alleged occurrences mentioned?

Truthfully, going off Wall has said about not wanting Steed to be charged, I believe the state would be receptive to dropping the case IF they can blame it on some technicality. Warren still has to battle the appeal and faces more charges. They've gotten quite a bit out of all involving Wall in their efforts against Warren, including Top 10 most wanted, on the run, locked up for trial and convictions...