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United States v. Porter

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


November 2, 2010

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, PLAINTIFF,
v.
JOHN RAYMOND PORTER, DEFENDANT.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Judge Hon. Garland E. Burrell, Jr.

MOTION AND [PROPOSED] ORDER TO REMOVE THE FEDERAL DEFENDER AS COUNSEL, AUTHORIZING THE APPOINTMENT OF CJA COUNSEL, AND CONTINUING OR MODIFYING PURPOSE OF HEARING. Date: November 5, 2010 Time: 9:00 a.m.

JOHN PORTER, by his current attorneys, the Office of the Federal Defender, and Assistant Federal Defender Douglas Beevers, hereby moves for orders removing the Federal Defender as counsel due to a breakdown in communications between attorney and client, authorizing the Federal Defender to arrange for a replacement attorney from the CJA Panel, and requesting a status conference date of November 5, 2010 to resolve the status of counsel for Mr. Porter.

The Ninth Circuit has held that in ruling on a defense motion to substitute counsel, the Court should consider the timeliness of the request and whether the conflict was so great that it resulted in a total lack of communication and which could prevent an adequate defense. United States v. George, 85 F.3d 1433 (9th Cir. 1996); United States v. Walker, 915 F.2d 480, 484 (9th Cir.1990) overruled on other grounds at United States v. Norby, 225 F.3d 1053 (9th Cir. 2000). Where a client is forced into trial with an attorney with whom he will not cooperate or communicate the attorney is unable to present an adequate defense. Id. In Mr. Porter's case the case is not yet even set for trial, although the Defendant has had the chance to meet with counsel and review the evidence. Defense counsel has visited with the Defendant at the jail at least five times and had numerous telephone calls, but he is unable to resolve the breakdown in communications.

ORDER

Based on the foregoing, a hearing is set for November 5, 2010, at 9:00 a.m. to address the issue of status of counsel. The Federal Defender is authorized to identify conflict-free CJA counsel in the event that the motion is granted.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

GARLAND E. BURRELL, JR. United States District Judge

20101102

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