Tape 3 Ms. LaViolette Volunteering Information
Martinez: If she wants to talk about the big picture, then I’m going back to start talking about the defendant slashing tires. If she wants to talk about the big picture, how she slept under the Christmas tree, she can’t have it both ways. Uh, I’m just asking her about that which is what I was instructed to do, and then she continues to want to advocate on behalf of the defendant. I just think that there has to be a stop at some point.
Willmott: There is a difference between advocating on behalf of the defendant, and just trying to answer truthfully. She’s just trying to answer truthfully. The reason why there is no information that has come in that Ms. Arias was the one who slashed Mr. Alexander’s tires is because there is no evidence of that, and even the state agreed to that, including Detective Flores. That’s why it doesn’t come in. That’s why it wouldn’t be appropriate as a 404B issue to come in. When she, when she’s talking about the big picture, she’s trying to answer his question because he’s trying to paint her into an answer that isn’t true. She can’t answer it yes or no and that’s what she continues to say.
Stephens: Alright, I’m going to sustain the objection and ask another question. She continues to volunteer information and I’ve told her, and you’ve told her not to volunteer information, but for whatever reason she wants to volunteer information. She’s just getting herself in deeper, because she’s doing that. So, for now I’m going to sustain the objection and let’s move on to another question.
Tape 4 Ms. LaViolette Secondary Gain and Prosecutor’s Questioning
Martinez: So you did consider the issue of secondary gain and decided that there was no problem with that particular issue in this case?
LaViolette: I decided that there was domestic violence.
Martinez: Judge, she’s just not being responsive.
Willmott: May we approach?
Willmott: We’re going to make speaking objections. The state continues to make comments about the witness not being responsive. The objection is non-responsive, not she’s just not being responsive, she’s just not answering the questions. I’m objecting to his speaking objections. Furthermore, the objection is that she’s attempting to answer his questions, but he interrupts her and doesn’t allow her to finish just because he wants a yes or no or something specific and she’s not able to give it. If he would just let her answer, he would get an answer.
Martinez: You are here judge and you’re seeing that she’s being evasive. I’ve been holding back because of your indication that perhaps I shouldn’t be as aggressive as I should. Uh, I can begin to be more aggressive with her if need be, uh, so that she may answer my questions yes or no. Um, I just have backed off, I have let her go, you know, on and on and not cut her off. At this point, um, it appears to me that the defendant wants it both ways. .. I need to not be assertive with her but then when I ask you for the remedy, they don’t want me to ask for that either.
Stephens: Okay, my preference is that you not escalate the aggressiveness at this point. Um, the objection, non-responsive, I will, I will rule based on that understanding of what you’re saying.
Martinez: Sure ….
Stephens: Um I, I do believe that the witness wants to answer with information that’s not what she’s being asked. I don’t want to admonish her in front of the jury. Perhaps you could discuss that with her at the break. She was doing the same thing yesterday, and it just delays the proceedings while she’s doing that. If she can’t answer the question being asked, she should just say I can’t answer that question or ….
Willmott: Or perhaps that’s the better course, because he …the questions that are being posed in a yes or no answer, cannot always be answered in a yes or no fashion. And that’s the problem that she’s having. And just for the record, when the court asked Mr. Martinez to back off the aggressiveness; for the record, when he talks about being aggressive or assertive, it’s not assertive; it’s aggressive because he’s yelled at witnesses in the past. He was doing it with Ms. LaViolette in the beginning of this, and so the court asked him to back down. So, the fact that he’s not getting her to answer just the way he wants her to answer, and um, does not in any way entitle him to start yelling at her again if that’s what he is proposing.
Martinez: If I may, I dispute that I yelled at anybody because the shriek that I heard by defence counsel yesterday on the last objection when she said ‘Judge’ at the very top of, appeared the top of her lungs was way louder than anything I’ve been heard addressing the witness with. So if we’re going to be talking about this issue it’s now denigrated to a situation where they’re attempting to gain a tactical advantage. I have abided by your rules, and I will continue to do so.
Stephens: Okay, counsel let’s move on. Tempers are getting short. You may proceed.