Division II: Feds Not Called as Witnesses Can't Be Compelled for Defendant's Depositions
Feds assisted with a child pornography investigation, and provided information used in a search warrant. The State did not intend to call the agents, so it had no duty to produce them. Vance did not follow procedure to obtain their testimony. When the officers didn’t show up, that’s where this case arises.
The judge allowed the depositions, and when the feds didn’t show up, he redacted the search warrant to determine if it still passed muster after deleting the information handed over by the feds. Without the information, the warrant failed, and Vance was kicked loose.
Now, because the state wasn’t calling the feds, it was up to Vance to use the proper procedure to get them there. As he didn’t, the state can still rely on the information in the warrants. Even then, there’s no real process for state courts to subpoena federal employees.
On the one hand, this led to a great conviction. On the other, it seems its another instance of the feds providing information to locals, the veracity of which cannot be ascertained because of this shield. I wonder how the Washington Supreme Court would analyze this issue.
While Issaquah Legal Services does not yet have a criminal attorney, we plan on having one in the near future. Please feel free to call us for recommendations on a Criminal Law Attorney.