Monday, March 06, 2006

Ebert Denies Motion for Dismissal

Prior to the defense case commencing this morning, Judge Steven Ebert denied defense motions to dismiss the case for lack of evidence.

Ebert said he spent considerable time working yesterday, and he found that the state had met its burden to this point of providing significant evidence to support the charges.

Prosecutor Brian Blanchard also moved to exclude the testimony of Don Millis, a former legislative staffer and Elections Board member. Blanchard said the testimony would be cumulative, and where not cumulative, irrelevant.

Jensen attorney Stephen Meyer said Millis' experience as a staffer and on the Elections Board at the time the alleged incidents happened would prove valuable.

Ebert denied the motion, saying he was loathe to deny the defense a chance to present the case as they wish. However, he promised, "We're going to work our tails off this week, and we're going to work late." He said if he found testimony irrelevant or unnecessary, he wouldn't wait to cut it off.

"The only person who can tell what the law is and who will tell the jury what the law is is me, not the witnesses," he said.

The first witness called by the defense is former Jensen flack Steve Baas, who now works for the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce.

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