The opinion of the court was delivered by: Michael P. McCUSKEY Chief U.S. District Judge
This case is before the court for ruling on various pre-trial motions filed by Defendant, Marshall L. Blanchard. This court has carefully considered the arguments presented by Defendant and the Government's Consolidated Response. Following this careful review, this court rules as follows: (1) Defendant's Motion in Limine - Impeachment of Defendant (#48) is DENIED in part and GRANTED in part; (2) Defendant's Request for Disclosure under Rule 404(b) (#49) is DENIED as moot; (3) Defendant's Motion in Limine regarding Defendant's prior conviction (#50) is DENIED as moot; and (4) Defendant's Motion in Limine regarding the testimony of Defendant's son (#51) is DENIED.
On April 8, 2005, Defendant, Marshall L. Blanchard, was charged in a two-count indictment with: (1) knowingly and intentionally manufacturing a mixture or substance containing methamphetamine, a Schedule II controlled substance, in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1); and (2) unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). The indictment alleged that both offenses occurred on or about December 30, 2004.
Defendant has pled not guilty to both charges. A final pretrial conference is scheduled for March 15, 2006, at 2:00 p.m. and a jury trial is scheduled for March 27, 2006, at 9:00 a.m.
I. MOTION IN LIMINE - IMPEACHMENT OF DEFENDANT
On February 17, 2006, Defendant filed his Motion in Limine - Impeachment of Defendant (#48). Defendant stated that he had been informed that the Government claims to possess evidence of drug use by Defendant, reflected in "concerns" to which his son, Marshall Blanchard, Jr., testified and a "drop" conducted during Defendant's pre-trial release. Defendant argues that, based upon Rule 608(b) of the Federal Rules of Evidence, this court should preclude the Government from attempting to introduce, for impeachment of Defendant, Defendant's "use of drugs."
On March 7, 2006, the Government filed its Consolidated Response to Defendant's Pre-Trial Motions (#53). In its Response, the Government set out in detail the evidence it intends to introduce at Defendant's trial. In response to Defendant's Motion in Limine (#48), the Government stated that, contrary to Defendant's largely conclusory and unsupported motion, it does not intend to introduce Defendant's "use of drugs" as impeachment under Rule 608(b). The Government stated that it does, however, intend to introduce evidence of Defendant's involvement in the use, distribution and manufacture of methamphetamine as direct evidence of and as evidence intricately related to the charged offense of the manufacture of methamphetamine. The Government argued that this is proper based upon the Seventh Circuit's well-established line of precedent which allows evidence of uncharged acts to be introduced if the evidence is "intricately related" to the acts charged in the indictment. See United States v. Lane, 323 F.3d 568, 580 (7th Cir. 2003); United States v. Ryan, 213 F.3d 347, 350 (7th Cir. 2000). Under the "intricately related" doctrine, the admissibility of evidence of uncharged activity turns on: (1) whether the evidence is properly admitted to provide the jury with a complete story of the crime on trial; (2) whether its absence would create a chronological or conceptual void in the story of the crime; or (3) whether it is so blended or connected that it incidentally involves, explains the circumstances surrounding, or tends to prove any element of the charged crime. Lane, 323 F.3d at 580. "Evidence need only satisfy one prong under [this analysis] in order to be admissible[.]" United States v. Harris, 271 F.3d 690, 705 (7th Cir. 2001).
The Government argues that, based upon the applicable case law, evidence of Defendant's involvement in the use, distribution and manufacture of methamphetamine will provide the jury with "a complete story of" the charged offense and a "chronological unfolding of events that led to [the] indictment." United States v. Akinrinade, 61 F.3d 1279, 1285-86 (7th Cir. 1995). This court agrees with the Government's argument that this evidence should be admitted at trial. This court further concludes that the probative value of this evidence outweighs its prejudicial effect. See Lane, 323 F.3d at 581.
The Government did not address Defendant's argument that evidence of a "drop" during Defendant's pre-trial release should not be admitted, and this court assumes that the Government does not intend to introduce this evidence. Therefore, that request by Defendant is granted.
II. REQUEST FOR DISCLOSURE OF 404(b) EVIDENCE
On February 17, 2006, Defendant filed a Request for the Government to Disclose Intent to Rely on any Evidence of Charged Bad Acts, Wrongs, or Other Crimes (#49). Defendant argued that, under Rule 404(b) of the Federal Rules of Evidence, he was entitled to notice of the Government's intent to present evidence as to uncharged bad acts, wrongs, or "other crimes." Defendant asked this court to enter an order directing the Government to disclose, no later than two weeks prior to trial, any evidence of prior bad acts it intends to introduce during trial.
In its Consolidated Response (#53), the Government stated that it has provided notice to Defendant of all evidence it intends to introduce at trial. The Government argued that this court should ...