Saturday, August 21, 2010

Accused Lez-bezzlers to be
Tried as Married Couple

What's the latest word from the heartland regarding the pending trial of two lesbians with deep ties to the gay political establishment? Let's turn to Tom Witosky, reporter for the Des Moines Register who's been following the case since charges were first filed, for some answers:

Marla Stevens will be tried at the same time as her spouse, Phyllis, on charges stemming from the alleged embezzlement of nearly $6 million from Aviva USA, a federal judge ruled [August 11].

U.S. Senior Judge Ronald Longstaff rejected a request by Marla Stevens' lawyer, Trever Hook, that his client be given a separate trial. Hook had argued that Marla Stevens could not get a fair trial because Phyllis Stevens intends to use an insanity plea in her defense. [...]

The two women are scheduled to go on trial on Sept. 20 in U.S. District Court in Des Moines. [...]

In rejecting the motion for two trials, Longstaff said no specific reason was presented to justify separate trials for the two women, despite claims that Phyllis Stevens' insanity defense would imperil Marla Stevens' planned defense.

"Marla has failed to set forth a specific reason as to why her particular defense is so antagonistic to or inconsistent with Phyllis' insanity defense that she will be unable to get a fair trial," Longstaff ruled. [...]

I expect this case will generate a number of precedents that will reverberate when gay or lesbian married couples are charged with committing crimes together. There should be much creativity on the part of both Stevens' attorneys.

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