By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter
MONTGOMERY—For months, indicted Speaker Mike Hubbard has hung his hopes on a dismissal, based on an allegation of prosecutorial misconduct. On Wednesday, trial Judge Jacob Walker, III sent a signal that he was ending the silliness and moving with haste toward the March 28, 2016 trial.
Judge Walker showed his intent to begin criminal proceedings as scheduled with a one-sentence-order stating, “Parties who wish to submit further briefs on any issues before this Court in the above-styled case must have those briefs filed by Tuesday, January 12, 2016.”
Several attorneys speaking on background agree, Judge Walker has had enough of the delaying tactics employed by Hubbard, and his criminal lawyer, J. Mark White.
Hubbard has tried to make a case for prosecutorial misconduct and selective and vindictive prosecution, based on memos and complaints issued by disgraced former Deputy Attorney General Henry T. “Sonny” Reagan. White has subpoenaed several individuals within the Attorney General Offices.
In October, the court heard testimony from Reagan. Another disgraced former AG Investigator Howard “Gene” Sisson was called by the defense, only to find his testimony was inadmissible.
Hubbard sought to take depositions from a laundry list of AG’s employees in including, Acting Attorney General W. Van Davis, Special Prosecution Division Chief Matt Hart, Chief Administrative officer Charla Doucet, Assistant Attorney General William Lisenby, former Chief Investigator, former and executive assistant Sandy McClure.
On November 23, 2015, the Court allowed the deposition of former Chief Deputy Attorney General Kevin Turner on November 23, 2015, with the remaining witnesses to be deposed on December 16, 2015.
Hubbard wanted to depose Assistant Attorney General Lisenby, because the defense claimed he had kept a journal about Deputy Attorney General Hart’s alleged violations of professional responsibility or ethics violations. In an affidavit presented to the court Lisenby stated, “I have no notes that reflect violations of rules of professional responsibility or ethics on the part of Matt Hart. If I had evidence that Deputy Attorney General Hart violated rules of professional responsibility or ethics, I would report the violation to a court or to the Alabama Bar. I have made no such report.”
On the weight of the affidavit, Judge Walker quashed his subpoena.
Hubbard’s defense argued that McClure had evidence that Hart and Davis back-dated Davis’ appointment as Acting AG, because she typed the letter. In McClure’s affidavit she swore she had not written the letter, and that there was no evidence that Hart or Davis had back-dated his appointment letter. Her subpoena was quashed as well.
In his latest order, Judge Walker determined to only allow Furhman and Haynes to be deposed.
Team Hubbard’s plan to depose Hart, Davis and others was scuttled by Judge Walker’s orders.
It is believed that retired FBI agent Furhman will offer nothing of value to the defense, and Haynes, who was a close associate of Reagan, will just wind up repeating some of his accusations.
Hubbard’s scheme to have his case dismissed on prosecutorial misconduct and selective and vindictive prosecution, seems to have vanished, just like his desire to delay the trial by a jury of his peers.