United States District Court, D. Montana, Billings Division
P. WATTERS United States District Judge.
Kenneth George Kramer has filed six motions in
limine. (Docs. 15 8-162). He is charged with conspiracy
to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine,
possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and
conspiracy to commit money laundering. (Doc. 2). Kramer's
recitation of the facts in his Motions in Limine are bare and
incomplete. The government provided no facts in its
responses. The government objects to Kramer's motions 1-3
and 5 as premature, and asserts that motion in limine number
four is moot. (See Docs. 175-179). As discussed
below, the Court denies the motions.
motion in limine "is a procedural mechanism to limit in
advance testimony or evidence in a particular area."
United States v. Heller, 551 F.3d 1108, 1111 (9th
Cir. 2009). District courts have broad discretion to make
evidentiary rulings conducive to the conduct of a fair and
orderly trial. Amarel v. Connell, 102 F.3d 1494,
1515 (9th Cir. 1996). This wide discretion includes
determinations of relevancy and weighing the probative value
of proffered evidence. Sprint/UnitedMgmt. Co. v.
Mendelsohn, 552 U.S. 379, 384 (2008). "To exclude
evidence on a motion in limine the evidence must be
inadmissible on all potential grounds." BNSF Ry. Co.
v. Quad City Testing Lab., Inc., 2010 WL 4337827, at * 1
(D. Mont. 2010) (citation omitted). Finally, rulings on
motions in limine are provisional and "not binding on
the trial judge [who] may always change [her] mind during the
course of a trial." Id. (citation omitted).
Motions in Limine #1-2, 4
Motions in Limine #1-2 and 4, Kramer does not seek to exclude
any specific evidence. (Docs. 158159, 161). Instead, Kramer
makes vague arguments and generally asks this Court to
enforce the Federal Rules of Evidence and the Federal Rules
of Criminal Procedure. These motions are more appropriately
raised via objection at trial if the government attempts to
introduce evidence that may violate the Rules of Evidence.
Accordingly, these motions are denied with leave to object at
trial. If Kramer believes that the government is making an
improper argument or attempting to introduce inadmissible
evidence, he can bring it to the Court's attention with a
Motion in Limine #3
Motion in Limine #3, Kramer asks this Court to allow him to
cross-examine cooperating government witnesses regarding the
minimum mandatory sentences they faced but for their
cooperation with the government. (Doc. 160). The government
acknowledges Kramer's absolute right to cross-examine
witnesses in accordance with the Federal Rules of Evidence
and argues that pre-emptively admitting or denying a line of
questioning by either party is premature. (Doc. 175 at 1-2).
The Court agrees. The government has not objected and does
not indicate that it will object should Kramer cross-examine
cooperating witnesses within the parameters of the rules. The
motion is also denied with leave to object at trial.
Motion in Limine #5
Motion in Limine #5, Kramer asks this Court to exclude
various "other crimes" evidence including:
- evidence of Kramer's younger brother's drug use;
- evidence of Kramer's son's methamphetamine sales;
- evidence that Kramer manufactured and attempted to sell