Judge Reviews Motions Prior to Tellezflores, Jr., Murder Trial

By Leslie Ortiz

WOODLAND, CA – Motions in limine from both prosecution and the defense were presented to Judge David Rosenberg here in Yolo County Superior Court Tuesday, prior to the trial of Jose Alfonso Tellezflores, Jr., who faces several felony charges, including murder and attempted murder.

Motions in limine are motions that look to establish whether specific evidence can be included or excluded before trial.

Rosenberg stated that he had five documents which were filed on Nov. 8, presented by Yolo County District Attorney Preston Schaub.

Rosenberg approved routine motions, including excluding witnesses from the trial and witnesses banned from discussing the case.

When the judged asked the defense, “Have you provided all discovery that you’re obligated to provide at this point and time?” the defense stated that they had no additional discoveries to provide.

However when the judge asked if there were any experts, DDA Schaub stated that he was still waiting on that piece of information. Schaub stated that he received material from “a different public defender, and a different case.”

Deputy Public Defender Martha Sequeira stated that she thought she sent him the information as “the only discovery that I see that we would have at this point is [a] doctor.”

Judge Rosenberg proceeded to grant the prosecution’s second motion.

DDA Schaub said that “once [he] gets that motion, [he] may request a 402 hearing” ahead of that testimony to ensure that “the relevance and everything is teased out ahead of time.”

Judge Rosenberg noted he would surely entertain that request but he may not grant it.

Schaub stated that his only concern is that a lot of the information “seems that it goes to more mitigation of sentencing than actual determination of guilt.”

“That’s a fair … comment,” said Judge Rosenberg.

PD Sequeira responded that the evidence is “relevant for this specific intent argument. Adolescent development and brain development all is relevant…of specific intent,” when you have a youthful offender, Sequeira said.

“We believe that the adolescent development expert would be relevant only to a very limited… inquiry,” Sequiera added.

Judge Rosenberg stated that he “would like to see a case in support of the use of that sort of evidence… in a guilt phase.”

Judge Rosenberg granted the third motion in limine which related to crime scene and autopsy photos that depicted the victims, and then granted, in part, the fourth motion, which stated that an officer and doctor’s disclosure are not admissible as impeachment.

The doctor’s disclosure was not opposed. However, regarding the officer, his credibility was questioned by the defense as he previously had given testimony, under oath in a trial, that he later declared to be incorrect.

Judge Rosenberg ruled that if the officer testified, he would “allow impeachment… based on his prior testimony that he was wrong.”

Rosenberg introduced the defense’s first motion which would “exclude any alleged prior conviction or prior conduct” and proceeded to ask if there are any more prior convictions or conduct that the People wanted to include.

Schaub admitted there are also some Snapchat video and photos “of the defendant holding a 10 mm Glock firearm … prior to the shooting, which based on the review of the video is the same firearm that was located in Sacramento.”

PD Sequeira argued that “he has to have a witness to put forth that opinion.” And when Judge Rosenberg asked Schaub if he had a witness, Schaub stated that he had two detectives he could use.

When Schaub noted there is a Snapchat video that depicted a serial number on the gun, Judge Rosenberg stated that the prosecution “may not need an expert,” to which the defense agreed.

However, Sequeira still objected to the admission of the Snapchat as she maintained, when the defense reviewed the video, they “did not see anything identifying, … when [they] consulted with [their] gun expert in the snapchat video that would make it any more distinguishable than any other Glock.”

Sequeira stated that “the prosecution has not filed an 1101 … theory of admissibility as to the prior Snapchat videos.” Judge Rosenberg stated that prosecution needed to submit an Evidence Code section 1101 brief on admissibility.

Judge Rosenberg read the defense’s third motion, which declared that Tellezflores must be allowed liberal examination of all prospective jurors to discover bias or prejudice.

Judge Rosenberg agreed and said that he would “not impose any unreasonable…15-minute or 30-minute constraints.”

Judge Rosenberg granted motions four and five, then discussed motion six which stated that “Mr. Robinson and Mr. Tellezflores should be addressed by their names,” and not any argumentative labels.

Rosenberg ruled, then, that “every party should be addressed by their name, like Mr. Smith or Mrs. Garcia,” and granted motion six.

The next hearing to finish the motions in limine was set for Wednesday.

About The Author

Leslie Ortiz is a junior at UC Davis majoring in Political Science and English. She is passionate about being a voice for those who are underrepresented and aspires to become a lawyer.

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