Tuesday, April 10, 2012

High court drama developing in Antonio Goodwin Felonious Four case?

image Yesterday, as jury selection was about to begin in Antonio Goodwin’s trial on armed robbery charges, defense attorney Lauryn Lauderdale filed motions to obtain specific drug testing information from Auburn University. In additional pre-trial maneuvering today, the school and the defense have reached an agreement in which the school will provide “certain general information” on its drug testing policies.

But the school has also agreed to provide to the court  individual data related to Goodwin and the other defendants in the case – Shaun Kitchens, Mike McNeil and Dakota Mosley – and potential state witnesses including DeAngelo Benton and former players Mike Dyer and Neiko Thorpe.

That information will only be released to the defense (and likely entered as evidence at trial) if the individual waives his right to confidentiality.

The state originally sought to quash Lauderdale’s subpoena, calling it a “fishing expedition.” The court was set to rule on the motion in hearings today, but the parties reached the agreement before arguments were to begin.

Lauderdale’s defense strategy is to have her client acquitted because of mental defect. While she has not said why she seeks the drug testing data, speculation is that if it shows what she thinks it does she’ll use the data in the attempt to show that her client was caught up in a culture of rampant drug abuse.

Lauderdale has also objected to the state’s actions with regards to Dyer and Thorpe, accusing the prosecution of trying to persuade them not to waive confidentiality.

“The state does not represent Neiko Thorpe. The state does not represent Mike Dyer,” she argued.

That prompted Lee County Circuit Court Judge Christopher Hughes to order prosecutors not to influence potential witnesses.

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