Pflueger’s Attorneys Successful in Delaying Client’s Manslaughter Trial, Prosecutor Said

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Former state attorney General Mark Bennett told the Intermediate Court of Appeals on Wednesday that even if they rule in the state’s favor and allow the manslaughter case against Jimmy Pflueger to go forward, Pflueger succeeded in getting something he wanted – another delay in the prosecution.

A state brief filed with the Intermediate Court of Appeals lays out the history of his attorneys’ delays after the breach of Pflueger’s Ka Loko dam killed 7 people and an unborn baby on March 14, 2006.

  • Pflueger was indicted in November 2008 on 7 separate counts of manslaughter, and one count of first degree reckless endangering.
  • In February 2009, Pflueger moved to disqualify the department of the attorney general as prosecutor. The circuit court denied this motion in August 2009, after granting defendant’s request for an evidentiary hearing on the matter (and allowing defendant to subpoena several State witnesses).
  • Pflueger immediately filed two motions to dismiss the indictment, one on grounds of prosecutorial misconduct and the other for failure to present exculpatory evidence. The circuit court denied both motions in June 2009.
  • Pflueger then moved for a bill of particulars. The circuit court granted in part and denied in part defendant’s motion. The State filed its bill of particulars in October 2009.
  • Pflueger subsequently moved to dismiss the indictment on the following grounds: Double jeopardy; insufficiency of the evidence or, in the alternative, vagueness and additionally moved for a change of venue.
  • In February 2010, the circuit court separately heard and denied defendant’s motions.
  • Pflueger immediately appealed the circuit court’s order denying dismissal of the indictment on double jeopardy grounds. He also moved for, and was granted, leave to file an interlocutory appeal of the court’s order denying dismissal of the indictment for insufficiency of the evidence or vagueness.

There is no firm timetable set for the Intermediate Court of Appeals ruling. Either side could appeal the case to the Supreme Court if they are not happy with the results, but the court can let the lower court’s ruling stand.

See the full report from the court here





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