U.S. v. Battle, Criminal Case No. 1:95-CR-528-ODE.

CourtUnited States District Courts. 11th Circuit. United States District Courts. 11th Circuit. Northern District of Georgia
Writing for the CourtOrinda D. Evans
Citation264 F.Supp.2d 1088
PartiesUNITED STATES of America, v. Anthony George BATTLE.
Decision Date30 April 2003
Docket NumberCivil Action No. 1:01-cv-2620-ODE.,Criminal Case No. 1:95-CR-528-ODE.
264 F.Supp.2d 1088
UNITED STATES of America,
v.
Anthony George BATTLE.
Criminal Case No. 1:95-CR-528-ODE.
Civil Action No. 1:01-cv-2620-ODE.
United States District Court, N.D. Georgia, Atlanta Division.
April 30, 2003.

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William H. McKinnon, Assistant United States Attorney, Atlanta, GA, for Government.

Margaret O'Donnell, McNally & O'Donnell, P.S.C., Frankfort, KY, P. Bruce Kirwan, Atlanta, GA, for Defendant.

ORDER

ORINDA D. EVANS, District Judge.


This federal death penalty case is before the Court for a ruling on Defendant's motion pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255. Defendant seeks to set aside his conviction and his sentence.

The Court having heard the evidence at trial, the evidence presented in support of Defendant's habeas claims, and having the benefit of the arguments of counsel will set forth below its legal conclusions and, where specifically indicated its findings of fact. For the reasons stated, Defendant's motion is DENIED.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
I. INTRODUCTION...............................................................1097
                II. CONSTITUTIONALITY OF THE FEDERAL DEATH PENALTY ACT,
                 18 U.S.C. §§ 3591-3597 .......................................1099
                 A. Defendant's Challenge to His Sentence.................................1099
                 B. Constitutionality of the Federal Death Penalty Act under the Fifth
                 Amendment Indictment Clause ......................................1103
                 C. Challenge to the FDPA's Evidentiary Standard..........................1105
                III. COMPETENCY-RELATED CLAIMS.................................................1107
                 A. Authority of Magistrate Judge to Preside at Competency Hearing........1107
                 B. Substantive Competency Claim .........................................1108
                 1. Competency Proceedings.............................................1109
                 2. Trial Proceedings..................................................1120
                 3. Kearns' Declaration................................................1122
                 4. 2002 Psychiatric Report............................................1123
                 5. Findings and Conclusions...........................................1125
                 C. Continuance to Permit Further Competency Evaluation..................1128
                IV. CONTROL OF DEFENSE OF INSANITY............................................1129
                V. CLAIMED INVESTIGATIVE FAILURES OF COUNSEL.................................1137
                 A. Adequacy of Social History Investigation...............................1137
                 B. Mitigating Mental Health Evidence......................................1143
                

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 C. Pesticide Exposure.....................................................1149
                 D. Defendant's Odd Behavior While in Prison Before the Murder.............1150
                 E. Defendant's Complaints of Implants before Washington's Murder..........1151
                 1. Complaints to Inmates...............................................1151
                 2. Complaints to Family Members........................................1156
                 F. Findings and Conclusions .............................................1161
                VI. FAILURE TO PROVIDE INFORMATION TO MENTAL HEALTH
                 EXPERTS.................................................................1161
                 A. Disciplinary Records..................................................1161
                 B. Chaotic and Violent Environment at USP-Atlanta........................1162
                 C. CT Scan Results.......................................................1163
                 D. Information Concerning Defendant's Social/Family Background and the
                 Development of His Mental Illness....................................1167
                VII. MISCELLANEOUS OTHER CLAIMS OF INEFFECTIVE ASSISTANCE
                 OF COUNSEL IN VARIOUS STAGES OF THE CRIMINAL
                 PROCESS...............................................................1168
                 A. Preindictment Phase...................................................1169
                 B. Pretrial Phase........................................................1169
                 1. Limitation on Butner Evaluation ...................................1169
                 2. Neurological Examination...........................................1170
                 3. Continuance of Trial...............................................1170
                 4. Exclusion of Robert Willis' Testimony..............................1171
                 5. Appointment of a Treating Psychiatrist.............................1173
                 6. Testimony of Counsel at Competency Hearing.........................1174
                 7. Daubert Hearing....................................................1175
                 8. Failure to Coordinate Work.........................................1176
                 C. Trial Phase...........................................................1178
                 1. Voir Dire..........................................................1178
                 2. Change of Clothes..................................................1179
                 3. Expert Testimony on Effect of Defendant's Mental Illness...........1179
                 4. Expert Explanation of Outburst in Courtroom And Defendant's
                 May 6,1995 Telephone Conversation with His Father................1180
                 5. Failure to Call John Pannell as a Trial Witness....................1180
                 6. Evidence that the Government Can Safely Incarcerate Defendant......1181
                 7. Conditions of Defendant's Confinement at the Atlanta Pretrial
                 Detention Center.................................................1183
                 8. BOP Role in Bringing About Washington's Death......................1183
                 9. Preparation of Defendant to Testify at the Guilt Phase and
                 Penalty Phase of the Trial.......................................1184
                 10. Deterioration of Defendant at Trial...............................1185
                 11. Failure to Call Dr. Rogers as Part of Defendant's Case in Chief...1185
                 12. Failure to Investigate, Seek to Set Aside, and Mitigate 1987
                 Conviction......................................................1186
                 13. Exclusion of Donovan Testimony....................................1187
                 14. Jury Instruction On Unadjudicated Criminal Conduct................1188
                 15. Jury Instruction that Life Sentence Defendant was Serving was a
                 Parolable Offense...............................................1189
                 D. Appeal................................................................1189
                VIII. JUROR MISCONDUCT.........................................................1190
                 A. Jurors Sleeping.......................................................1190
                 B. Other Juror Misconduct................................................1192
                 1. Presence of Bible and Discussion of Religious Scripture During
                 the Trial..........................................................1192
                 2. Presence of Alternate Jurors During Guilt Phase Deliberations.....1193
                 3. Premature Penalty Deliberations...................................1194
                 4. Cumulative Effect of Jury Misconduct..............................1194
                

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IX. TRIAL COURT ERRORS .....................................................1194
                 A. Limitation on the Penalty Phase Testimony of Defense Social Historian
                 and Social Worker Jan Vogelsang....................................1194
                 B. Discharge of Jurors Craft and Tooley.................................1196
                 C. Refusal to Permit Juror Craft to Attend the Trial after She was
                 Dismissed as a Juror...............................................1197
                 D. Failure to Instruct the Jury on the Consequences of a Not Guilty by
                 Reason of Insanity Verdict..........................................1198
                 E. Insufficient Evidence of "Heinous, Cruel and Depraved" Aggravating
                 Circumstance.......................................................1199
                X. BIAS OF TRIAL JUDGE......................................................1200
                XI. PROSECUTORIAL MISCONDUCT.................................................1201
                XII. CONFLICT ISSUES.........................................................1206
                 A. Drs. Johnson and Hazelrigg...........................................1206
                 B. Trial Counsel........................................................1206
                XIII. VIOLATION OF RIGHT TO MEANINGFUL APPELLATE REVIEW.......................1207
                XIV. NEW TRIAL REQUEST........................................................1207
                XV. CUMULATIVE EFFECT OF ERRORS..............................................1209
                XVI. DEATH PENALTY CRUEL AND UNUSUAL........................................1209
                XVII. CONCLUSION.............................................................1209
                

I. INTRODUCTION

On November 21, 1995, Defendant was charged in a indictment with the murder of D'Antonio Washington, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1118. The indictment charged that:

[o]n or about December 21, 1994, [Defendant] while confined in a federal correctional institution, the United States Penitentiary at Atlanta, Georgia, under a sentence of life imprisonment ... did unlawfully and with malice aforethought commit the murder of D'Antonio Washington, by beating [him] with a hammer ...

Defendant entered a plea of not guilty on December 4, 1995. He simultaneously filed a notice of intent to rely on the defense of insanity at the time of the offense.

On July 26, 1996, the Government filed the statutorily required Notice of Intent to Seek the Death Penalty. See 18 U.S.C. 3593(a). The notice referenced the intent or gateway factors in 18 U.S.C. § 3591(a)(2)1 and listed five statutory aggravating factors2 along with several nonstatutory

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aggravating factors which the Government sought to prove during the proceedings. After a determination of Defendant's competency to stand trial, the trial began on February 21, 1997.3 The primary issue at the guilt-innocence phase of the trial was whether Defendant, as a result of a severe mental disease or defect, was unable to appreciate the nature and quality or the wrongfulness of his acts at the time of commission of the murder. See 18 U.S.C. § 17(a) (defining insanity defense). The Government's experts opined that Defendant has a mixed personality disorder,4 with...

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27 practice notes
  • U.S. v. Le, No. CRIM. 1:03CR48.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 4th Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of Virginia)
    • 27 Julio 2004
    ...any type of unreliable or prejudicial evidence that might render a trial fundamentally unfair.'" Id. (quoting United States v. Battle, 264 F.Supp.2d 1088, 1106 In summary, as the Fifth Circuit correctly concluded, the relaxed evidentiary Page 608 standard set forth in § 3593(c) "does not im......
  • U.S. v. Rodriguez, Crim.No. C2-04-55.
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of North Dakota
    • 29 Julio 2005
    ...and must be charged in the indictment, while non-statutory factors need not be alleged in the indictment); United States v. Battle, 264 F.Supp.2d 1088, 1105 (N.D.Ga.2003) (non-statutory aggravating factors need not be alleged in the indictment because they do not increase the punishment); U......
  • U.S. v. Fell, Docket No. 02-1638.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Second Circuit
    • 2 Marzo 2004
    ...to exclude any type of unreliable or prejudicial evidence that might render a trial fundamentally unfair." United States v. Battle, 264 F.Supp.2d 1088, 1106 (N.D.Ga.2003); see also United States v. Johnson, 239 F.Supp.2d 924, 946 (N.D.Iowa 2003) (holding that the FDPA "expressly supplants o......
  • U.S. v. Johnson, No. CR 01-3046-MWB.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 8th Circuit. Northern District of Iowa
    • 6 Junio 2005
    ...any type of unreliable or prejudicial evidence that might render a trial fundamentally unfair.'" Id. (quoting United States v. Battle, 264 F.Supp.2d 1088, 1106 (N.D.Ga.2003), and also citing this court's decision in Johnson, 239 F.Supp.2d at 946). Thus, § 848(j) also enhances rather than im......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
27 cases
  • U.S. v. Le, No. CRIM. 1:03CR48.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 4th Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of Virginia)
    • 27 Julio 2004
    ...any type of unreliable or prejudicial evidence that might render a trial fundamentally unfair.'" Id. (quoting United States v. Battle, 264 F.Supp.2d 1088, 1106 In summary, as the Fifth Circuit correctly concluded, the relaxed evidentiary Page 608 standard set forth in § 3593(c) "does not im......
  • U.S. v. Rodriguez, Crim.No. C2-04-55.
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of North Dakota
    • 29 Julio 2005
    ...and must be charged in the indictment, while non-statutory factors need not be alleged in the indictment); United States v. Battle, 264 F.Supp.2d 1088, 1105 (N.D.Ga.2003) (non-statutory aggravating factors need not be alleged in the indictment because they do not increase the punishment); U......
  • U.S. v. Fell, Docket No. 02-1638.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Second Circuit
    • 2 Marzo 2004
    ...to exclude any type of unreliable or prejudicial evidence that might render a trial fundamentally unfair." United States v. Battle, 264 F.Supp.2d 1088, 1106 (N.D.Ga.2003); see also United States v. Johnson, 239 F.Supp.2d 924, 946 (N.D.Iowa 2003) (holding that the FDPA "expressly supplants o......
  • U.S. v. Johnson, No. CR 01-3046-MWB.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 8th Circuit. Northern District of Iowa
    • 6 Junio 2005
    ...any type of unreliable or prejudicial evidence that might render a trial fundamentally unfair.'" Id. (quoting United States v. Battle, 264 F.Supp.2d 1088, 1106 (N.D.Ga.2003), and also citing this court's decision in Johnson, 239 F.Supp.2d at 946). Thus, § 848(j) also enhances rather than im......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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