United States District Court, D. Montana, Missoula Division
W. Molloy, District Judge United States District Court
October 3, 2019, Defendant Allan Roy Goodman was indicted on
seven felony counts related to the possession of firearms and
the possession and distribution of methamphetamine and
heroin. (Doc. 14.) Trial is set for December 16, 2019, at the
Russell Smith Federal Courthouse, Missoula, Montana. (Doc.
24.) Goodman has four motions pending before the Court:
motion to change venue, (Doc. 25), motion for information on
cooperating witnesses, (Doc. 29), motion for
Henthorn materials, (Doc. 31), and motion for an
"ends of justice" continuance, (Doc. 27). They are
addressed in turn.
seeks a change of venue in light of the pretrial publicity he
received at the time he changed his plea. (Doc. 25.)
"Because a criminal defendant has the right to an
impartial jury, a court must grant a motion to change venue
if prejudicial pretrial publicity makes it impossible to seat
an impartial jury." Daniels v. Woodford, 428
F.3d 1181, 1210 (9th Cir. 2005) (internal quotation marks
omitted); c.f. Fed. R. Crim. P. 21(a) (requiring
transfer "to another district if the court is satisfied
that so great a prejudice against the defendant exists in the
transferring district that the defendant cannot obtain a fair
and impartial trial there"). However, "[p]rominence
does not necessarily produce prejudice, and juror
impartiality . . . does not require
ignorance." Skilling v. United States, 561 U.S.
358, 381 (2010). Thus, a presumption of prejudice only
attaches in "extreme cases." Id.
"Prejudice is presumed when the adverse publicity is so
pervasive and inflammatory that the jurors cannot be believed
when they assert that they can be impartial." United
States v. Croft, 124F.3d 1109, 1115 (9th Cir. 1997).
Goodman has not made such a showing here.
support of his motion, Goodman presents a single story
produced by NBC Montana. (See Doc. 26-1.) He argues
that the story exaggerates the amount of drugs he was
selling, contains "a litany of accusations from
untrustworthy confidential informants," and misstates
his previous convictions. (Doc. 26 at 3.) He further asserts
that such news stories are likely to be broadcast again.
(Id.) But, contrary to Goodman's
characterization, this single article contains "[n]o
evidence of the smoking-gun variety [that would] invite
prejudgment of his culpability." Skilling, 561
U.S. at 383. And, the possibility of any potential bias based
on this article, or those like it, can be addressed in voir
dire. See Mu 'Min v. Virginia, 500 U.S. 415,
426-27 (1991) (emphasizing "the wide discretion granted
to the trial court in conducting voir dire in the
area of pretrial publicity"). Goodman's motion to
change venue is therefore denied.
further seeks a wide range of information on cooperating
witnesses in the case. (Doc. 29.) The United States'
discovery obligations in criminal cases are governed by (1)
the due process clauses of the Fifth and Fourteenth
Amendments, as interpreted by the Supreme Court in Brady
v. Maryland, 373 U.S. 83 (1963); (2) Rule 16 of the
Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure; and (3) the Jencks Act.
Brady v. Maryland
process clauses of the Fifth and Fourteenth amendments, as
interpreted by the Supreme Court in Brady and its
progeny, require the prosecution to disclose exculpatory
evidence that "is material either to guilt or to
punishment." 373 U.S. at 87. Evidence is material when
"there is a reasonable probability that, had the
evidence been disclosed to the defense, the result of the
proceeding would have been different." United States
v. Bagley, 473 U.S. 667, 682 (1985). "A
'reasonable probability' is a probability sufficient
to undermine confidence in the outcome." Id.
The inquiry considers nondisclosed evidence
"collectively, not item by item." Kyles v.
Whitley, 514 U.S. 419, 436 (1995). Brady
applies to impeachment and other evidence relevant to the
credibility of government witnesses. Giglio v. United
States, 405 U.S. 150, 154(1972).
government must disclose Brady information even
absent a discovery request by the defendant. United
States v. Agurs, 427 U.S. 97, 108 (1976). The obligation
is not excused because a prosecutor is unaware of exculpatory
evidence; rather, "the individual prosecutor has a duty
to learn of any favorable evidence known to the others acting
on the government's behalf in the case, including the
police." Kyles, 514 U.S. at 437.
Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 16
is no general constitutional right to discovery in a criminal
case, and Brady did not create one."
Weatherford v. Bursey, 429 U.S. 545, 559 (1977).
However, Rule 16 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure
allows defendants to request certain
information. Goodman only superficially cites Rule 16,
but Rule 16(a)(1)(E) provides:
Upon a defendant's request, the government must permit
the defendant to inspect and to copy or photograph books,
papers, documents, data, photographs, tangible objects,
buildings or places, or copies or portions of any of these
items, if the item is ...