A District Court Judge has denied an ex-Green River Police Officer’s request to withdraw his No Contest plea in the death of a toddler.
During a hearing on Monday, Anglesey’s defense requested that 3rd Judicial District Judge Rick Lavery allow Anglesey to withdraw his plea and instead move forward with trial proceedings.
Anglesey pleaded No Contest in September to a charge of Voluntary Manslaughter for the death of two-year-old Konnor Allen in 2009. Anglesey was arrested and charged for the crime in February of 2016 after he was indicted by a grand jury.
With Anglesey’s plea still in effect, he is set to be sentenced next week on Wednesday and Thursday in a hearing which is slated for two days.
If the court had granted Anglesey’s Motion to Withdraw, the case would have been set for trial on a charge of Murder in the First Degree—a fact which Lavery made clear during the hearing on Monday. During that hearing, Judge Lavery asked Anglesey if he would still like to withdraw his plea knowing he would face a first degree murder charge. Anglesey asked for additional time to speak with his attorneys before answering. Lavery told Anglesey that he had until Wednesday to let the court know if he still wanted to withdraw the plea. Shortly before 5 p.m. on Monday, Anglesey went back on record to inform the court that he still wanted to withdraw his plea.
Despite Anglesey’s desire to withdraw his plea and head to trial, Judge Lavery denied the motion today and ruled that Anglesey will face sentencing for Voluntary Manslaughter.
Anglesey faces a maximum of 20 years imprisonment.
About the Hearing
Third Judicial District Judge Rick Lavery oversaw a hearing on Monday to discuss a Motion to Withdraw No Contest Plea.
Defense Attorney Vaughn Neubauer argued that the prosecutors violated discovery orders which required them to provide information to the defense. He told Judge Lavery that they received additional information and reports showing the victim’s mother had a violent past, including two domestic violence cases in which she was the alleged aggressor one of which resulted in a Battery conviction.
In addition, Neubauer pointed to a report obtained after the plea was entered which indicated that Konnor Allen’s mother had planned to kill Anglesey following her son’s death. The defense argued that this report and others showed a propensity for violence of which they were unaware prior to Anglesey’s No Contest plea.
“This information is of significant magnitude and type to get us to change our trial strategy,” said Neubauer.
He argued that they could now pursue an alternate suspect defense alleging the victim’s mother actually inflicted the fatal injuries prior to the child coming into Anglesey’s care.
Neubauer also argued that the reports could show reason to impeach the mother as a witness in the case.
Prosecuting Attorney Daniel Erramouspe told Judge Lavery that he did not agree with the Motion to Withdraw and asked the court to move forward with sentencing next week.
Erramouspe acknowledged that the report containing statements from the victim’s mother about her desire to kill Anglesey was not in the information provided to the defense. He said this was due to an inadvertent mistake as the Department of Criminal Investigation was changing to a new system. The report did not print when the case file was printed, but it was provided to the defense as soon as the error was discovered.
Furthermore, Erramouspe said the mother’s desire to kill someone who she believed was responsible for her child’s death was an understandable feeling which did not show a propensity for violence. He also took issue with the defense’s claims that the women’s domestic violence history showed she was violent. He noted that there were a total of six domestic violence claims involving the woman, most of which listing her as a victim. He said one Battery conviction when she was 17-years-old did not show a pattern of violent behavior.
As for the defense pursuing another theory, Erramouspe said he was glad to see that the defense was realizing that Konnor’s death was not an accident—which was their previous defense strategy. He said the mother was not home at the time of the injury. Also, he said Anglesey had multiple claims as to how Konnor was hurt, none of which indicated the mother’s involvement in any way.
Judge Lavery informed Anglesey that he would face a charge of Murder in the First Degree if he did withdraw his plea and asked if he would still like to withdraw it. Anglesey asked for more time to speak with his attorneys on the matter. Lavery asked Anglesey to inform the court by Wednesday if he still wanted to withdraw. Anglesey went back on the record later on Monday to say that he did still wish to withdraw his plea.