In case you’re following along with the Walker v. Donahoe, et al. Fourth Amendment open carry civil rights lawsuit, we have a jury trial scheduled for February 19, beginning at 8:30 a.m. at the federal courthouse in Huntington, West Virginia. As of right now it’s still on. Both sides have asked the court for summary judgment, which basically means that both sides claim to have the law completely on their side. The court has not ruled as of yet. Pretrial documents have been submitted, including motions in limine, which are trial issues anticipated by the parties, which are best argued prior to the start of the trial. If you haven’t seen the video of the incident in dispute, here it is:
The defendants are seeking to exclude portions of this video showing the “investigatory detention” of Michael Walker by the Putnam County Sheriff’s Department. Not surprisingly, they want the part of the video where the police officer calls Michael a “co*ksucker,” repeatedly, among other things to be kept away from the jury. Here’s their argument:
Also not surprisingly, we strongly disagree. Here’s our response. The judge will decide at some point, and generally has the broad discretion to control the flow of what the jury gets to see, and what they don’t:
We also filed a few motions in limine of our own, including our attempt at stopping the defendants from bringing up the Parkland school shooting, which they have announced is their attention, and which has absolutely nothing to do with the case. They are also seeking to make the case that because Michael had an AR-15 style rifle, that a reasonable officer could suspect him of being a potential school shooter, or something to that effect. Which is of course highly offensive, and antithetical to both the Fourth Amendment and the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution:
In case you’re curious about the current status of laws pertaining to the open carrying of firearms in West Virginia, check out the last post I did on it. It should still be the same. Of course, this case could change that if it doesn’t go our way…..