Moving Target(s)

Show Us Some Leg

Late yesterday afternoon we learned that attorneys for Dylan Ward filed a  motion for a Bill of Particulars with Judge Frederick Weisberg.  Defense team David  Schertler and Robert Spagnoletti are asking for more information and details on the individual acts that make up the many charges.  They want to see the  “who, what, when, where and how” of the government’s allegations.  

With a Bill of Particulars Ward won’t have to “defend against moving targets,” according to Spagnoletti, and without it he won’t be able to prepare an adequate defense.  Whether Assistant US Attorney Glenn Kirschner fights the motion is uncertain.

The doc is a quick 10 page read that provides a stripped down timeline of the night with an almost antiseptic mention of the murder.  After decrying the lack of evidence and motive, it goes on to ding the MPD for talking a big game in the press in the weeks and months following the murder.  No kidding. Legal stuff follows then on page 8, a mention of the prison time hanging over Ward’s head specifically, thirty-eight years.

Is this a formality defense teams always ask for?  A typical dilatory tactic or a problem for the prosecution?

And of course, Legal Times’ Mike Scarcella has the details.

-posted by Craig

26 comments for “Moving Target(s)

  1. Anon
    03/10/2009 at 10:35 PM

    Weellll… those high-priced defense lawyers need to do something to bill up some hours, but you’d think they’d include 5 minutes of proofreading for an extra $30, given the typos and mistakes in their motion: “what’s going one?” and saying 2008 where it should have said 2006. This is typical delay and defense victim-posturing. How ironic that they are saying the prosecution isn’t giving them enough details to figure out what Dylan is being accused of, yet the charges are based on the accuseds’ failure to provide details of what really went on.

    • Ridicuolous
      03/11/2009 at 8:10 AM

      For sake of clarity “Anon” – not providing details of what happened is not a crime (and it is not what they are being charged for), it is covering up the crime that is the problem (e.g. cleaning up the blood). There is a differenence. (And if you had read the motion or almost any filing to date you would know that they in fact spilled their guts without attorneys for a number of hours after the murder so just because you don’t choose to believe the details that they provided does not mean that they did not provide details).

  2. Nick
    03/11/2009 at 8:49 AM

    It’s interesting that Ward’s attorney focuses mostly on the conspiracy charge. Does that mean that less specificity is required for obstruction and tampering charges?

    • CDinDC
      03/11/2009 at 12:33 PM

      I agree with Nick….consipiracy charges could possibly be a clue to Ward’s attorney’s defense strategy. Maybe they’ll try to pin it on Price. Get Ward’s charges reduced to Aiding and Abetting.

      From the internet: “A person charged with aiding and abetting or accessory is usually not present when the crime itself is committed, but he or she has knowledge of the crime before or after the fact, and may assist in its commission through advice, actions, or financial support. Depending on the degree of involvement, the offender’s participation in the crime may rise to the level of conspiracy.”

  3. 03/11/2009 at 7:33 PM

    were is she getting money to be filing gratuitous motions? must be nice to be on daddy’s payroll. i would have thought daddy may have reached for the flush handle a decade ago. i cannot that ms.ward would try to pin it on the attorner; ms. victor would shoot that down!

    • CDinDC
      03/11/2009 at 10:25 PM

      Sometimes people sing when faced with time in the pen. Ms. Ward will be exactly that in the big house….Ms. Ward. Ward’s, Price’s and Z’s allegiance to one another may be what gets flushed when the reality of prison time sinks in.

    • Lance
      03/11/2009 at 11:19 PM

      OK, I’d like to call on the moderators to please put a stop to this. There’s nothing here that contributes to the discussion, and the constant reference to “Ms. Ward” and now “Ms. Victor” is frankly offensive.

      • CDinDC
        03/12/2009 at 7:05 PM


        I was making a point by using “Ms Ward.” Dylan Ward likes to think of himself as a dominant. He may have a rude awakening in prison. The hierarcy of the prison yard may turn tables on him.

        Regarding “She Did It’s” use of “Ms”….I’ve lived my entire adult life in the gay community. I’ve grown used to hearing my male friends switch pronouns, and no offense has ever been intended or taken. I guess you could say….it’s a gay thing.

        Is it a little light for this blog? Possibly. We’re not chatting about what a drag queen wore last night’s performance. We’re discussing the murder of a young man.

        But who am I to judge.

    • Theo
      03/16/2009 at 8:33 AM

      Dylan Wade is male. Why do you insist on using she? If you are trying to be demeaning by using female pronouns, then you assuming that being female is demeaning or perhaps you’re just an old queen who thinks he is being funny but is totally failing.

  4. steve
    03/12/2009 at 4:03 AM

    I wholely support and second Lance’s sentiment. Come on, moderators. Try to keep it civil and focused. “She Did Its” comments are offensive, distracting and contribute nothing.

  5. L.
    03/12/2009 at 10:15 AM

    “She did it’s” comments are actually funny – and a good diversion from the otherwise serious nature of this blog.

    I vote to keep him.

    • IKWDI
      03/12/2009 at 1:09 PM

      I am conflicted. On the one hand, I find the use of the prefix “ms.” quite annoying and (as indicated by others here), possibly offensive to some.

      On the otherhand, the following seem to counter against censorship here:

      1. This is a blog, not an institution of great repute (what that would be, I don’t know).

      2. The blog expressly invites “comments”.

      3. The words are not those of the editors, but of a single commenter.

      4. Although annoying and perhaps offensive, it seems to fall within a zone of acceptability.

      5. Once the editors start censoring comments, this could have a chilling effect on posters here.

      • Lance
        03/12/2009 at 6:25 PM

        Points 1, 2, 3, and 5 are, I fear, entirely irrelevant. I think–and I may be wrong–that there are comments that the editors would delete (“censor”): those that are both irrelevant and rude, perhaps those that are outright defamatory. Even though it’s “only” a blog, even though it invites comments, even though it’s a single commenter, I think the question is not “can/should they delete certain comments” but rather “which comments can/should they delete”.

        Which leaves #4, which is the real issue: are SDI’s comments within a zone of acceptability? Well, that’s up to the blog’s organizers. I’d like to think that insofar as they’re (a) disrespectful, (b) defamatory, and (c) not contributing anything (“diversion”, L.? It’s a serious matter; if you want a diversion, read the comics page, not a discussion of an unsolved murder), they have no place here.

        This particular comment, to be clear: refers to a motion as “gratuitous” when that’s hardly clear; assumes that Ward’s father is paying for things; suggests that Ward’s father should have cut off his son “a decade ago” (and why, really?), and in general contributes positively nothing to the discussion.

  6. George
    03/12/2009 at 2:40 PM

    The use of “Ms.” and the feminine pronouns is intended to be insulting, and it is insulting and juvenile. It also undermines whatever weight one might otherwise be tempted to give to SDI’s comments. Leave the catfight on datalounge.

    • L.
      03/12/2009 at 3:17 PM

      I am confused. Why is “Ms.” insulting?
      Are women inferior to men?
      Is it insulting to refer to a white man as “brother” – implying that he is black or acts black?

      “Ms.” is meant to be funny and light hearted.

      • George
        03/12/2009 at 8:03 PM

        Yes, L. Women are wholly-inferior to men. That is surely why people find it offensive to refer to a man as ‘Ms.’ and ‘she’.

        What does it mean to “act black” anyway? If I act like the Commander in Chief, are you going to call me ‘brother’?

        You are being coy, and this is not a date. I wouldn’t suggest that SDI or you are not entitled to comment, but really, the gratuitous insults are not even remotely constructive.

    • L.
      03/12/2009 at 3:19 PM

      Men who are secure would care less if referred to as “Ms.”

      • Lance
        03/12/2009 at 6:16 PM

        This comment is also extremely condescending and dismissive. It’s not a matter of how secure one feels; it’s a matter of simple respect. (Can we also start referring to “Ms. Robert”? Maybe “gay-boy Wone”? It’s just a word, regardless of accuracy, right?)

        I would have thought that, in the gay community if nowhere else, there’d be a recognition of how important one’s identity is, and how referring to a gay man as a woman evokes a long history of insult and dismissive language.

        • L.
          03/13/2009 at 3:30 PM


  7. Anon.
    03/12/2009 at 4:31 PM

    The use of “Ms” is just too cutesy for this blog and the seriousness of the matter. Do it at the bar with your friends, but not here please.

  8. Sigmund Freud
    03/12/2009 at 7:09 PM

    How can Spagnoletti defend this creep? And please don’t tell me everyone has the right to defense. Probably wants the press for his HUGE ego.

    • CDinDC
      03/12/2009 at 7:27 PM

      Maybe Spagnoletti knew the defendant prior to the murder. Spagnoletti is gay, you know.

    • Lance
      03/12/2009 at 9:30 PM

      Because the person isn’t a creep and Spagnoletti thinks he’s innocent? Just throwing that out there.

      • Sigmund Freud
        03/13/2009 at 1:09 PM

        Sure, the knife used on Wone is exactly like the missing one from Ward’s set, the body is cleaned, the body has puncture marks and sexual assualt, the boys took their sweet time calling the police and then when EMTs showed up acted like it was a tea party. All 3 of them know what happened and are disgusting for keeping it quiet.

  9. 03/12/2009 at 7:39 PM

    hi girls(and boys) –

    sorry to set off the firestorm by using my feminine pronouns with this “family”(ward,price,victor).

    all comments need to be heard in this world; perhaps especially those with which you may disagree (lance). i have no intention of treating ms. ward with kid gloves — yes, she’s cute but i know many a queen who thinks she’s guilty of more than drug abuse. murder, she wrote?

    anyway,the case is fascinating; the blog spectacular and facts enlightening. i would love some testimonials from ward’s friends, tricks, co-workers. love, all.

  10. Robert A Spiegel, Esq.
    03/17/2009 at 4:28 AM

    Same crimes may be defined in different ways by
    different jurisdictions. Within jurisdictions, there
    may be greater specificity in delineating elements
    of some crimes as distinguished from other crimes.

    Indeed, the elements of conspiracy tend to be
    more general than those of aiding and abetting.
    Thus, the prosecutors have already provided more
    details relating to A&A than regarding conspiracy.

    Requesting a Bill of Particulars is fairly standard
    practice and not a dilatory tactic. If the court felt
    the action was just wasting time, the judge could
    summarily “quash” the motion & with prejudice.

    It will not be up to the defense counsel as to what
    gets “pinned” on whom. This is not a high school
    prom; it is a serious court case. The prosecutors
    determine who will be charged with what and the
    judge or jury decide who will be convicted of what.

    You should be happy that the defendants appear to
    be well represented. A defendant may appeal case
    on the basis of inadequate representation. This
    can lead to a retrial or in some cases dismissal!

    The irony here is not that Spagnolett is Gay but
    that he is former DC Attorney General. DC is a
    federal jurisdiction. This means a former federal
    attorney is facing off with a federal US Attorney.

Comments are closed.