Saturday, July 02, 2005

Todd Graves comments

A news release, court documents and MP3 audio files regarding Bill Waris' Saturday morning guilty plea have been posted to our Web site for download. Here is the text of Todd Graves' prepared remarks, delivered on the steps of the federal courthouse Saturday morning:

Waris, a former county executive and lobbyist for Jackson County, pleaded guilty in federal court this morningto making a material false statement to FBI agents.

I’m pleased with this guilty plea. We are seeking the truth, wherever it may lead. Waris has now admitted that the story he told FBI agents was not truthful. The advantage of today’s plea agreement is that it forces Waris to provide substantial assistance with any federal investigation by fully and truthfully disclosing everything he knows related to the investigation, including testifying before the grand jury or at trial.

Today’s guilty plea holds Waris accountable for his actions and sends a clear signal that we are serious about upholding the integrity of the judicial process. We will vigorously prosecute those who interfere with the process of justice.

Every citizen has a legal obligation to cooperate fully and honestly with any law enforcement investigation. Lying to federal agents is a criminal act that will be prosecuted.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Tuesday's Court Docket

(Note: Monday, July 4, is a federal holiday)

Kansas City:
  • Donald Hollingsworth (KCMO), indicted for conspiracy to manufacture meth, jury trial at 8 a.m. in Courtroom 8C
  • Michael McCourt (Parkville MO), indicted for child porn, jury trial at 9 a.m. in Courtroom 8A
  • William Waris (KCMO), indicted for obstruction of justice and lying to the grand jury, jury trial at 9 a.m. in Courtroom 7A

Nothing newsworthy to report in Springfield or Jefferson City

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Friday's Court Docket

Kansas City:

  • Christopher Kelly (KCMO), indicted for his role in a conspiracy to manufacture methamphetamine, change of plea at 10 a.m. in Courtroom 8C

Nothing newsworthy to report to Springfield or Jefferson City.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Thursday's Court Docket

Kansas City:
  • Brian A. Myers (Gladstone, MO), who pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm, will be sentenced at 9:30 a.m. in Courtroom 7B.

Nothing newsworthy to report on the Springfield and Jefferson City dockets.

Rocket-launchers detained

Michael Sullivan and Joseph Seidl, the Kentucky men charged in Jefferson City with conspiring to distribute meth after being arrested by law enforcement officers who also found a rocket rigged to launch from the trunk of their vehicle, have been ordered detained in federal custody without bond.

Court upholds search

The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the ruling by the District Court, which denied a motion by defendant Antonio Slater to suppress a firearm that is evidence in his federal conviction for being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Slater was the passenger in a car stopped by an Independence police officer at a sobriety checkpoint. During the stop, a computer check revealed an outstanding arrest warrant and a search uncovered a loaded revolver in Slater’s pocket.

The appellate court ruled that the officer's request for defendant's identification did not violate the Fourth Amendment even if the request was unrelated to the sobriety stop which was in progress; request for identification and officer's decision to conduct a computer search of defendant's information did not unreasonably prolong detention at the sobriety stop.

Here is the court's published opinion.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Wednesday's Court Docket

Kansas City:
  • Charles Winston (KCMO), indicted for distributing cocaine, jury trial continues in Courtroom 8C
  • Mario Thibeaux (KCMO), indicted for being a felon in possession of a firearm, sentenced at 9:30 a.m. in Courtroom 7C
  • Ricardo Antonion Scott, a used car dealer from KC-North who was indicted for tampering with a witness in his trial for conspiracy to launder the proceeds of illegal cocaine trafficking through his automotive dealership, change of plea at 10 a.m. in Courtroom 7C
  • Dusty McSparran (Lee's Summit, MO), one of several Missouri prison inmates to plead guilty to an income tax refund scheme, will be sentenced at 10:30 a.m. in Courtroom 7C
  • Eric Noel (KCMO), who pleaded guilty to conspiring to distribute crack cocaine, will be sentenced at 11 a.m. in Courtroom 7C
  • Donald Hollingsworth (KCMO), indicted for his role in a conspiracy to manufacture meth, change of plea at 1:15 p.m. in Courtroom 8C
  • Jeremy Knowles, indicted for being a felon in possession of a firearm, sentenced at 1:30 p.m. in Courtroom 7A
  • Andrew Brown, indicted for being a felon in possession of a firearm, sentenced at 2:30 p.m. in Courtroom 7A
  • Danyell R. Jones (KCMO), indicted for being a felon in possession of a firearm, sentenced at 3:30 p.m. in Courtroom 7A

Jefferson City:

  • Michael Sullivan and Joseph Seidl, the Kentucky men charged with conspiring to distribute meth after being arrested by law enforcement officers who also found a rocket rigged to launch from the trunk of their vehicle, detention hearing at 9:30 a.m.

Nothing newsworthy to report from Springfield.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Tuesday's Court Docket

Kansas City:
  • Charles Winston (KCMO), indicted for distributing cocaine, jury trial continues in Courtroom 8C
  • Angelica Macias (KCMO), indicted for selling cocaine, change of plea at 10:30 a.m. in Courtroom 6D
  • Eleazar Gonzalez-Saenz, indicted for illegal narcotics, change of plea at 2:30 p.m. in Courtroom 6E
Springfield:

  • Robert J. Harper, arrested in Laclede County following a high-speed pursuit in a stolen vehicle and indicted for illegally possessing stolen firearms, jury trial continues
  • Lester D. Erby, who pled guilty to a firearms violation, sentenced at 8 a.m.
  • Amy Lawrence, indicted for distributing meth in Jasper County, change of plea hearing at 2 p.m. in Magistrate Courtroom

Truesdale trial

A jury trial for Bruce Truesdale, a Jefferson City attorney indicted for child porn, has been scheduled for Nov. 28, 2005.

Truesdale, who self-surrendered on the indictment and pleaded not guilty in federal court today, was released on his own recognizance. The court ordered Truesdale to have no contact with minors or access to computers.

Court upholds sentence

The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals today upheld the sentencing of Anthony Collier (KCMO), who pleaded guilty to identity theft and bank fraud and received an upward departure at his sentencing hearing (here is our news release).

The court ruled that evidence was sufficient to support upward departures in fraud case; judge's fact finding did not violate the Sixth Amendment as defendant admitted all of the facts upon which the court relied; district court did not err in denying reduction for acceptance of responsibility; applying Pirani's plain error analysis, defendant was not entitled to Booker relief as he failed to demonstrate a reasonable probability that the district court would have imposed a lesser sentence under an advisory guidelines scheme.

Here is the court's published opinion.