By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter
MONTGOMERY— During Tuesday’s hearing, Hubbard’s criminal lawyer, Lance Bell, tried to turn the proceedings into an evidentiary hearing on prosecutorial misconduct, contrary to Judge Walker’s orders. Hubbard is seeking testimony from radio news gatherer and commentator, Baron Coleman, and this reporter, alleging we received Grand Jury information leaked by prosecutor Matt Hart.
Bell wants to depose Hart on the matter, arguing, because alreporter.com published a statement from Hart 13 minutes before al.com’s Mike Cason, it somehow proves a nefarious transaction between the Alabama Political Reporter and the prosecution. He also wants Judge Walker to believe that Hart leaked Grand Jury information because he inadvertently sent the motion, in which Hubbard’s attorney, J. Mark White, and his firm, asked to withdraw from the case.
(Note: I was unaware of the subpoena)
Before the hearing, the State filed a motion objecting to Hubbard’s latest tactics, saying, “Hubbard now seeks, yet again, to unilaterally convert a routine motions hearing into an evidentiary hearing without leave of Court. Specifically, Hubbard had the Clerk issue appearance subpoenas to Bill Britt and Baron Coleman for testimony at the January 26th hearing.”
The State reminded the court that the evidentiary hearing on prosecutorial misconduct had concluded, and that while the defense had subpoenaed Coleman, they never called him as a witness. They further argued, Hubbard never subpoenaed me, even though he had ample opportunity before the January 12 briefing deadline has passed.
The prosecution also argues, “Hubbard’s subpoenas to the press are yet another attempt by the defense to stoke the flames of pretrial publicity, even though he argues that such publicity is grounds for a continuance.” Hubbard has argued that he was due a continuance because of pretrial coverage by this publication, now the State says, “may not, on the one hand, argue for a continuance of the trial based on too much press coverage of his case and, on the other hand, grandstand by sending subpoenas to members of the press that serve no legitimate purpose.”
Hubbard has used intimidation tactics against this publication for years. This, is just the latest in a series, which includes scaring away some of our advertisers.