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United States v. Rodgers

United States District Court, W.D. Pennsylvania

July 28, 2014

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
v.
MARIO RODGERS, ALLAN WILLIAMS, ERIC EVERETT, BRANDON BOONE, JOSH WILLIAMS, TERRELL PERCY WILLIAMS, MICHAEL PORTER and DERRICK KNOX, Defendants.

MEMORANDUM ORDER

TERRENCE F. McVERRY, District Court Judge.

This complex criminal case arose out of a lengthy investigation regarding alleged cocaine and heroin trafficking in and around Washington, Pa. On June 13, 2012, a federal grand jury returned an 18-count Indictment against the following Defendants: Kashma Jordan, Robert Harvey, Juan Worthey, Jr., Mario Rodgers, Brandon Wise, Allan Williams, Will Levy, Keith Malone, Alex Hockett, Brent Anderson, Eric Everett, Brandon Boone, Josh Williams, Christina Wright, Terrell Percy Williams, Michael Porter, and Derrick Knox. In Count 1 of the Indictment, each Defendant was charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine from January 2011 through June 2012. In Counts 2 through 18, various Defendants were charged with possession with intent to distribute cocaine or crack on various dates.

On March 19, 2013, a grand jury returned a 22-count Superseding Indictment, in which all of the original Defendants except for Worthey, Malone, and Wright were named. Newly named as Defendants in the Superseding Indictment were John Wright, Jr., Zachary King, and Michael Sutton. Count 1 re-alleges a cocaine conspiracy against all Defendants. Counts 2 through 15 re-allege the cocaine possession/distribution charges from the original Indictment. Counts 16 through 18 allege cocaine/distribution charges against Defendants Sutton and King. Counts 19 and 22 charge Jordan and Everett, respectively, with possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime. Finally, Counts 20 and 21 charge Porter and Everett with possession of a firearm/ammunition by a convicted felon.

A jury trial, which is estimated to last four-to-six weeks, is presently scheduled to commence on September 2, 2014. Of the 20 Defendants named in the Original and/or Superseding Indictment, 12 have pled guilty. Eight Defendants remain for trial: Rodgers, Allan Williams, Everett, Boone, Josh Williams, Terrell Williams, Porter, and Knox.

Now pending before the Court are numerous motions in limine and other final pretrial motions:

(1) DEFENDANT [Allan Williams'] FIRST MOTION IN LIMINE RELATING "EXPERT" TESTIMONY CONCERNING THE JARGON AND CODED LANGUAGE COMMON TO DRUG TRAFFICKERS AND REQUEST TO PRECLUDE SUCH TESTIMONY (WITH CITATION TO AUTHORITY) (ECF No. 683);

(2) DEFENDANT [Allan Williams'] MOTION IN LIMINE RELATING "EXPERT" TESTIMONY CONCERNING THE JARGON AND CODED LANGUAGE COMMON TO DRUG TRAFFICKERS AND REQUEST FOR A DETERMINATION OUTSIDE THE PRESENCE OF THE JURY CONCERNING THE ADMISSIBILITY OF SUCH TESTIMONY (WITH CITATION TO AUTHORITY) (ECF No. 684);

(3) DEFENDANT [Allan Williams'] FIRST MOTION TO COMPEL THE GOVERNMENT'S COMPLIANCE WITH THE COURT'S ORDER TO PRODUCE TRANSCRIPTS OF THE INTERCEPTED COMMUNICATIONS THAT IT INTENDS TO USE AT TRIAL (WITH CITATION TO AUTHORITY) (ECF No. 685);

(4) DEFENDANT [Allan Williams'] MOTION IN LIMINE RELATING THE USE OF THE TRANSCRIPTS BY THE GOVERNMENT (ECF No. 694);

(5) "ME TOO" MOTION IN LIMINE (ECF No. 696) filed by Defendant Terrell Williams;

(6) MOTION TO EXCLUDE POST-ARREST STATEMENT (ECF No. 703) filed by Defendant Michael Porter;

(7) UNITED STATES' MOTION IN LIMINE (ECF No. 704) regarding use of a computer during jury deliberations;

(8) UNITED STATES' MOTION IN LIMINE (ECF No. 705) regarding recall of witnesses;

(9) UNITED STATES' MOTION IN LIMINE (ECF No. 706) regarding references to possible sentences;

(10) UNITED STATES' MOTION IN LIMINE AND RESPONSES TO DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO COMPEL AND EXCLUDE THE USE OF TRANSCRIPTS (ECF No. 707);

(11) SECOND MOTION REQUESTING NOTICE PURSUANT TO RULE 404(b) OF THE FEDERAL RULES OF EVIDENCE (ECF No. 756) filed by Defendant Terrell Williams;

(12) MOTION IN LIMINE TO EXCLUDE GOVERNMENT'S EVIDENCE OFFERED PURSUANT TO 404(B) OF THE FEDERAL RULES OF EVIDENCE (ECF No. 762) filed by Defendant Porter;

(13) DEFENDANT [Allan Williams'] MOTION IN LIMINE RELATING TO EVIDENCE THE GOVERNMENT INTENDS TO OFFER UNDER THE RUBRIC OF F.R.E. 404(b) (WITH CITATION TO AUTHORITY) (ECF No. 764);

(14) DEFENDANT [Eric Everett's] MOTION IN LIMINE TO EXCLUDE GOVERNMENT'S EVIDENCE BEING OFFERED PURSUANT TO 404(b) OF THE FEDERAL RULES OF EVIDENCE (ECF No. 766); and

(15) MOTION IN LIMINE (ECF No. 767) filed by Defendant Terrell Williams.[1]

The government filed an omnibus response (ECF No. 736) to the motions in limine filed at ECF Nos. 683, 684, 685, 694, and 696 and a separate omnibus response to Defendants' motions regarding Rule 404(b) evidence (ECF No. 771). None of the Defendants responded to the motions in limine filed by the government. The Trial Scheduling Order and other deadlines have expired and the motions are ripe for disposition. Indeed, in its Memorandum Order of February 20, 2014, the Court notified the parties that it would endeavor to resolve all ...


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