United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
M. Yandle United States District Judge
before the Court are Defendant Marshall’s Motion for
Joinder (Doc. 30) and the Government’s Motion to
Transfer Location of Trial (Doc. 53). For the following
reasons, the motions are GRANTED.
Derek Marshall, Terrell McGee, and Leslie Woods are charged
in a six-count Indictment with two counts of Conspiracy to
Interfere with Commerce by Robbery, two counts of
Interference with Commerce by Robbery, and two counts of
Carry and Use of a Firearm During a Crime of Violence (Doc.
1). The Indictment alleges that the Defendants conspired to
commit and committed two separate armed robberies of the Best
Stop in Cahokia, Illinois, on June 17, 2010, and the Mini
Mart in Cahokia, Illinois, on July 8, 2010. The joint trial
of Defendants Marshall and McGee is scheduled to begin on
September 26, 2016. Defendant Woods’ trial has not been
joinder of multiple defendants in an indictment is allowed
under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 8(b) when the
Government has alleged that the defendants “have
participated in the...same series of acts or transactions
constituting an offense or offenses.” United States
v. Ras, 713 F.2d 311, 315 (7th Cir. 1983); Fed.R.Crim.P.
8(b). Joinder under Rule 8(b) is governed by the face of the
indictment. United States v. Bruun, 809 F.2d 397,
406 (7th Cir. 1987). The Seventh Circuit has interpreted this
rule to broadly permit liberal joinder in order to enhance
judicial efficiency, limit inconveniences to witnesses, avoid
delays in bringing defendants to trial, and allow the
“total story” to be presented to a single jury.
United States v. Stillo, 57 F.3d 553, 556-57 (7th
Cir.), cert. denied, 516 U.S. 945, 116 S.Ct. 383,
133 L.Ed.2d 306 (1995); Richardson v. Marsh, 481
U.S. 200, 209-210, 107 S.Ct. 1702, 95 L.Ed.2d 176 (1987)
(Joint trials “play a vital role in the criminal
justice system” because they promote efficiency and
“serve the interests of justice by avoiding the scandal
and inequity of inconsistent verdicts.”).
joinder is appropriate because the Defendants are alleged to
have participated in the exact same series of acts which form
the basis of the six counts charged in the two Indictments.
Each count of the Indictments relate to acts committed by the
Defendants in furtherance of an ongoing conspiracy. The
conspiracy charges in Counts 1 and 4 serve to link the
substantive counts against the Defendants, satisfying the
relatedness requirement of Rule 8(b) and justifying joinder.
See Ras, 713 F.2d at 315. Accordingly, Defendant
Marshall’s motion is granted.
matter is STRICKEN from the final pretrial setting of
September 8, 2016, and jury trial setting of September 26,
2016. Final Pretrial Conference is reset for December 15,
2016, at 9:30 a.m. and the jury trial is reset for January 9,
2017, at 9:00 a.m. before the undersigned district judge. The
time from the date the original motion was filed, September
21, 2015, until the date to which the trial is rescheduled,
January 9, 2017, is excludable time for the purposes of
calculating speedy trial.
Sixth Amendment requires that in all criminal prosecutions,
the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public
trial, by an impartial jury “of the State and
district wherein the crime shall have been committed,
which district shall have been previously ascertained by
law.” U.S. Const. Amend. VI. (Emphasis added). The
United States District Court for the Southern District of
Illinois has no divisions pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 93. As
such, there is no distinction between the courthouses located
in East St. Louis and Benton for purposes of a
defendant’s Sixth Amendment rights.
Rule 18 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure provides
that a court “must set the place of trial within the
district with due regard for the convenience of the
defendant, any victim, and the witnesses, and the prompt
administration of justice.” Fed.R.Crim.P. 18. “A
trial court has broad discretion in deciding where to fix the
location of the trial which will not be overridden on appeal
as long as the court gives ‘due consideration’ to
the factors listed in Rule 18.” United States v.
Balistrieri, 778 F.2d 1226, 1229 (7th Cir. 1985) (citing
United States v. Truglio, 731 F.2d 1123, 1130 (4th
Cir.1984). Thus, pursuant to Rule 18, the Court must weigh
the convenience of the defendant and his witnesses against
the prompt administration of justice and the Court’s
inherent power to manage itself, its resources and its
caseload as it sees appropriate.
considered the circumstances of this particular case, the
Court finds that the aforementioned relevant factors weigh in
favor of holding trial at the East St. Louis courthouse.
Here, most, if not all, of the witnesses who will testify in
this case reside in Cahokia/East St. Louis, Illinois area or
in St. Louis, Missouri. Although the undersigned’s duty
station and essential chambers staff are located in Benton,
the Court is persuaded that the prompt ...