A March 13 deadline came and passed for prosecutors to respond to a motion demanding greater information about the indictment in the Robert Wone case, and now the defense lawyers for the three defendants are stepping up the pressure on the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
The lawyers—Thomas Connolly, Bernard Grimm, and David Schertler—filed court papers this week urging D.C. Superior Court Judge Frederick Weisberg to treat the motion for a bill of particulars as “conceded” because the deadline passed without a response from the government. It remains to be seen whether the lawyers will get what they want.
There was no immediate word from the U.S. Attorney’s Office today why the deadline was not met and whether the government plans to respond to the defense motion seeking a detailed account of the government’s evidence. A motion for a bill of particulars is rarely granted; prosecutors routinely say that the indictment is sufficient and that discovery will be provided.
Prosecutors also have not responded to a defense motion that requested Weisberg modify the pre-trial release conditions for the defendants—Victor Zaborsky, Dylan Ward, and Arent Fox partner Joseph Price. The men are charged with obstruction of justice, conspiracy, and evidence tampering. Police say Wone was restrained, sexually assaulted, and fatally stabbed in the home of Price and Zaborsky.
Zaborksy, Ward, and Price, who have pleaded not guilty to the charges, are free on their own recognizance but are required to submit to weekly drug testing. Schertler, Connolly, and Grimm say in court papers that their clients have repeatedly tested negative for drugs and should therefore not be required to continue to submit to drug tests.
But prosecutors did not respond to the motion; the defense lawyers say the modification request should be considered conceded in the absence of a response from the government.
Judge Weisberg has set a status conference for April 24.