Skip to comments.Verdict Reversal for Ex-Border Patrol Agent (We're not talking about Ramos and Compean.)
Posted on 02/03/2007 2:59:39 PM PST by Issaquahking
David Sipe is a once convicted criminal who can honestly say he "didn't do it."
"Relief. Relief. After 7 years, it's gone. It's over."
The ex-border patrol agent gets a 2001 guilty verdict overturned in his retrial for civil rights violations against a smuggler. The incident dates back to April of 2000 in Penitas.
"He was striking me in the side... he was very close to my weapon... and I had to do what I could to control the situation as fast as I could."
Fearing for his life, David subdues the smuggler by hitting him with his flashlight. It results in staples to the smugglers head. A border patrol investigation is launched and deems his actions inappropriate-- even illegal.
"I don't know how they're able to do that... but I don't think that's fair."
Neither did a jury who overturns his conviction from the first trial against him.
David says the government, who he faithfully worked under for nearly 4 years, turns its back on him while rolling out the red carpet, as he puts it, for the illegals turned witnesses.
"They got to stay here and work in our country."
The smuggler even gets a government settlement.
"80 thousand dollars... he now has his own ranch in Mexico.'
As for David-- he doesn't collect a thing. In fact, his life and family gets ripped apart.
"My house foreclosed on after having to file bankruptcy, my children having to live through this... of course my wife divorcing me."
Through it all, he says, justice is served. And while most about David is forever changed one thing returns and it's most important thing to him of all.
"I have my freedom back. I'm a man of honor again."
What lead to this morning's "not guilty" verdict reversal against the former border patrol agent? Turns out his attorney says the prosecution in the first trial supressed evidence and lied about benefits given to "Alien" witnesses.
Attorney Jack Wolfe explains.
"They with-held evidence about their witnesses who had prior convictions...they didn't tell us... they were supposed to tell us. In fact, they told us that they had no witnesses with convictions."
A new trial was granted and David Sipe's conviction was thrown out. As a result, Sipe is a free man and fighting to get his job back. +++++++++++++++
Here's a previous article about this. Looks like he was able to obtain a change of venue for the 2nd trial.
Also a post on history channel blog, that gives some good links.
David Sipe, another Texas Border Patrol agent who was convicted of undue force against a illegal, had his conviction overturned by the 5th Circuit.
The reason? The U.S. Attorney's office withheld information and did not advise the court of the benefits given to the illegal in exchange for the illegal's testimony against BP Agent Sipe.
First, the ruling of the court:
Second, the history of the case:
Can anyone see the similarities in this case with that of Ramos and Compean?
Here are a few: Border Patrol agent related to boss of one of the illegals (a tie between Davila and Rene Sanchez, BP)
failure of prosecution to provide all evidence to defense
benefits given to illegals who testified against the Border Patrol agent
failure to provide defense with subsequent arrests of illegal who testified
failure to give criminal history of illegals who testified
just for starters
AuntB posted on 2007-01-29 18:14:41 ET Reply
The decision in this case is a great read. It sounds just like the case against Ramos and Compean. If nothing else they should get a new trial! Has that already been ruled out?
Here's a snip.
In an oral ruling from the bench, he noted that in his twenty plus years on the bench, he had never granted a Rule 33 motion. He explained: I don't . . . make this decision lightly. It is the Court's view that in the interest of justice, [Sipe's motion for a new trial] should be granted. And also there is a reasonable probability that had the evidence been disclosed to the Defense, the result of the proceeding would have been different . . . . And that's the standards -- those are the standards the Court has used here.
Sipe moved for the production of the government's entire investigative file. After reviewing the material produced, Sipe identified four additional pieces of exculpatory or impeachment information that the government had failed to provide. First, Sipe discovered that the government had taken several photographs of the arrest scene. Guevara himself is in the photographs, apparently posing to demonstrate where he was located in the reeds when Sipe struck him.
Second, Sipe learned that Alexander Murillo, one of the government's witnesses, had a criminal history. Specifically, Murillo had been charged in the past with filing a false police report, theft, and harassment, although there had been no convictions. Third, Sipe learned that the government interviewed one Herica Rodriguez before trial. Rodriguez, one of Sipe's fellow EMT students, told government investigators that Sipe was a "nice person" and that she did not hear him make any statements suggesting that he disliked or disrespected aliens.
Finally, despite the government's written assurance to the defense that the only benefit given to the testifying aliens was permission to remain and work in the United States pending trial, Sipe learned that the aliens received numerous other benefits from the prosecutors. For example, they were given Social Security cards, paid witness and travel fees, allowed to travel to and from Mexico to visit family, permitted to travel to North Carolina to work, and allowed to use government phones to contact relatives in Mexico.
The failure of the government to divulge this information cast two other prosecutorial nondisclosures in a new light. First, Sipe discovered that the two aliens in the brush with Guevara, Sanchez and Diaz, who testified at trial, had been living with Guevara and his wife during the months before trial. They had testified at trial that they did not know Guevara before the fateful crossing, supporting the government's portrayal of Guevara as a poor illiterate with only one hand who was crossing in search of work, meeting up with them only by happenstance. This evidence countered defense suggestions that Guevara was not a migrant worker but a "coyote," an oftentimes dangerous transporter of illegal aliens who was engaged in leading Sanchez, Diaz, and others across the border.
Relatedly, the government failed to disclose that before trial, Guevara was intercepted by Border Patrol agents in the company of illegal aliens and that the arresting agents released Guevara when he displayed a card given to him by prosecutors. Since Guevara had been granted free passage in his deal with the government, his arrest with illegal aliens was evidence that he was a transporter, as well as evidence of the extent of the government's support accorded him in order to obtain his testimony. As the defense termed it, Guevara was given a "get out of jail card."
Indeed, the court asked at trial, "How could you -- how could people have really seen what was going on here . . . ?" These discrepancies stood in stark contract to the unchallenged fact that Sipe had made hundreds of arrests as a border patrol agent without complaint and 10 the complete absence of evidence that Sipe had previously used excessive force.
In granting Sipe's motion for a new trial, the district court was careful to note that it also did so "in the interest of justice." Under Rule 33(a), a district court "may . . . grant a new trial if the interest of justice so requires."57 A motion for new trial "is addressed to the discretion of the court, which should be exercised with caution, and the power to grant a new trial . . . should be invoked only in exceptional cases . . . ."58 However, if "a court finds that a miscarriage of justice may have occurred at trial, . . . this is classified as such an `exceptional case' as to warrant granting a new trial in the interests of justice."59>
In granting Sipe's motion, the district court focused primarily on the Brady violations committed by the government. But, as the court's oral ruling on the matter reveals, there was far more in the mix than just the five items of evidence discussed above. Indeed, throughout the proceedings, the government's disclosures were inadequate. In many cases, the court discovered 57 FED. R. CRIM. P. 33(a). 58 United States v. Robertson, 110 F.3d 1113, 1120 n.11 (5th Cir. 1997) 46 that the government had failed to reveal important information, but Sipe was no doubt prejudiced by the delay and hindered in his preparation for trial.
The Judge noted before granting the motion that he had never before in his twenty years on the bench ordered a new trial. Yet he sat through the trial, learned of the government's repeated nondisclosures and misrepresentations, and was troubled. While many of these nondisclosures do not satisfy Brady's rigid materiality standard, they nonetheless convinced the district court that Sipe did not receive a fair trial. That said, we need not and therefore do not decide if his decision could properly rest solely on the district court's exercise of discretion under Rule 33. AFFIRMED AND REMANDED FOR TRIAL. 47
R. ALEXANDER ACOSTA
Hispanic Business - R. Alexander Acosta, influential Hispanic for 2004
Mr. Acosta is the first Hispanic to serve as assistant attorney general. Before joining the Justice Department, he served as a member of the National Labor Relations Board, the principal federal agency for regulating labor unions. He is the 2003 recipient of the Mexican-American Legal Defense & Education Fund's Excellence in Government Service Award and the D.C. Hispanic Bar Association's Hugh A. Johnson Jr. Memorial Award.
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&client=firefox-a&channel=s&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&hs=Pk0&q=R.+ALEXANDER+ACOSTA+&btnG=Search Prior to his appointment as United States Attorney, Mr. Acosta was nominated by President Bush and confirmed by the Senate to serve as Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division of the United States Department of Justice. Mr. Acosta was the first Hispanic to serve as an Assistant Attorney General at the Department of Justice. The Civil Rights Division is responsible for enforcing federal civil rights statutes, including those statutes that prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, sex, handicap, religion, and national origin in education, employment, credit, housing, public accommodations and facilities, voting, and certain federally funded and conducted programs. Mr. Acosta had also served as Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Civil Rights Division.
Prior to his service as Assistant Attorney General, Mr. Acosta was nominated by President Bush and confirmed by the Senate to serve as a member of the National Labor Relations Board ("NLRB"), an independent federal agency responsible for administering and interpreting the National Labor Relations Act, the principal national statute regulating private-sector labor relations.
A native of Miami, Florida, Mr. Acosta attended the Gulliver Schools in Miami. He earned his degrees from Harvard College and Harvard Law School. After graduation, he served as a law clerk to the Honorable Samuel A. Alito, Jr. on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. He then worked at the Washington, D.C. office of the law firm Kirkland and Ellis, where he specialized in employment and labor issues. Mr. Acosta has also taught several classes on employment law, disability-based discrimination law, and civil rights law at the George Mason School of Law.
The Asst. Attorney General that handled this case is a piece of work!
PR calls for Alexander Acosta- Interim Attorney for Southern FL to step down : gave DOJ funding to terror supporting Musim group
July 4, 2005
OFFICIAL FROM JUSTICE DEPT. INITIATED GRANT TO TERROR SUPPORTING GROUP
AAH SAYS ACOSTA HAS "NO CHOICE" BUT TO RESIGN
(Coral Springs, FL) On February 7, 2005, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced the availability of funds in the form of outreach grants for "public education efforts regarding immigration-related employment discrimination." One of the grants was given to the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), a group with a long history of support for overseas Islamic terrorist organizations that receives millions of dollars from Wahhabists in Saudi Arabia.
Yesterday, Chairman of Americans Against Hate (AAH), Joe Kaufman, contacted the Justice Department to infer about how the grant got into the hands of ADC. Kaufman spoke with Acting Public Affairs Specialist to the DOJ's Office of Special Counsel for Immigration Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC), Lilia Irizarry, who stated that the grant was initiated by none other than DOJ official Rene Alexander Acosta.
Acosta had just been presented with ADC's 2005 'Friend in Government' Award in May, just one month prior to ADC announcing on its website that it had received the grant.
According to a DOJ counter-terrorism memorandum issued shortly after 9/11, the mission of DOJ is "to preserve the Constitutional rights and freedoms of all Americans." It is not to give and receive awards from those that wish to cause harm to Americans. Because of this extreme conflict of interest, AAH is calling on R. Alexander Acosta to step down from his current position as Interim U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida.
Joe Kaufman stated, "It is outrageous that an official from the Justice Department would accept an award from a group that supports overseas terror. It is equally outrageous that the Justice Department would give taxpayers' money in the form of a federal grant to this group. But what is even more outrageous is the fact that the official that received the award from the group was the same individual that initiated the grant to begin with! In his actions, Mr. Acosta has shown a total disregard for the personal welfare of the citizens of the United States. It is evident that he can no longer perform his duties with the trust of the people he has been charged to protect. We therefore feel that he has no other choice but to resign from his position as Interim U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida."
Joe Kaufman is available for interview. E-mail: email@example.com.
Ted Poe addresses the House on January 10th with the following speech:
RE: DEPUTY GILMER HERNANDEZ--BORDER LAWMAN
"Mr. Speaker, in the small border town of Rocksprings, Texas, where drug smugglers and human smugglers sneak across the Rio Grande into America, lone Deputy Sheriff Gilmer Hernandez was on patrol. In the stillness of the vast night, a speeding Suburban runs a red light. Deputy Hernandez, 25, stops the vehicle, but suddenly, without warning, the vehicle takes off. Deputy Hernandez says the vehicle tried to run him down. The lawman fires several shots, one of which shoots out the rear tire, just like in the movies. The vehicle stops, and eight or nine illegals jump out and take off running into the sagebrush. One illegal had a minor injury from a bullet.
The U.S. Government rounds up six or seven of the illegals and, guess what, prosecutes Deputy Hernandez, claiming he recklessly discharged his firearm and uses the illegals as witnesses against the lawman during a trial. Citizens of his town are mad. One said, ``Our deputy's in jail for doing his job.'' Mr. Speaker, another example of how the Federal Government is more concerned about people illegally invading America than it is about the men who protect America. Once again, our government is on the wrong side of the border war. And that's just the way it is."
Please go to the website of www.freegilmer.com to read more on this issue, and see what you can do to get this good American out of jail!
Border Patrol Agents ping!
Take the federal government to court, about how this guy's life was ruined, because somebody on the left profiled hime - he was not an illegal alien.
We do know the largest breaker of the law for hiring illegals is the U.S. government, becuase they have quotas for advancing minorities instead of an average american who is white, and male.
I'm pretty sure ole CharlesWayneCT had to go cry in a beer after this one.
Border Patrol Agents not the first, ping.
Just wondering why this might be the case if my perception is right.
PING, for later!
another case in the news (haven't checked all of FR yet to see if it was posted) is a van full of illagals just tried to murder a patrol officer in Texas- tried to run him down- he fired at the vehicle, now he faces up to ten years if convicted. Sorry- no link- it was on Fox news a bit ago.
The following link is a signature link and does not relate to this thread http://sacredscoop.com
yeah oldpossum- love aint what it used to be- marriage vows aren't the oath binders they used to be either unfortunately- I also see a lot of husbands leave their wives when their wives of kids get sick- terminally sick I mean- Michael Shiavo was a classic example of the scumbag mentality. He not only left her, he had her put to death!
Border Patrol Agents shafted...ping
Not for much longer...
Thaks for posting this information.
www.teamtancredo.com and www.electtancredo.com
>>After the article is some of the decision to grant another trial and some information about the Asst. Atty General in the case ,R. Alexander Acosta, who handles the "civil rights" division of the justice department. He's bragged before congress about how many suits they've brought against small counties because they didn't have enough Spanish language poll workers!
They have quite a foreigner protection racket going in the DC 'justice' department!<<
This was Clinton's DOJ, not George W's. I don't like either administration's DOJ.
DOH! Acosta *is* GW Bush's Assistant Attorney General. The initial prosecution was Clinton's people, and GW Bush's people handled the final appeal. Apologies.
Like I said, I don't like the DOJ under either administration.
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