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United States v. Fadden

United States District Court, W.D. Wisconsin

September 19, 2016

United States of America
v.
Fadden, Leon

          ORDER GOVERNING FINAL PRETRIAL CONFERENCE

         Generally

         A defendant may waive his or her presence at the final pretrial conference. A waiver must be in writing, signed by the defendant and submitted to the court not later than the beginning of the conference.

         It is not necessary that the attorney actually trying the case attend the final pretrial conference, but trial counsel are bound by representations and decisions made at the conference in their absence.

         An attorney located more than 30 miles from the federal courthouse may seek permission to appear telephonically for the final pretrial conference. Such permission must be sought and obtained at least one work day before the conference.

         Same day service is required for all final pretrial conference submissions.

         Failure timely to file and serve documents or raise issues addressed in this order may constitute waiver at the court's discretion.

         All trial counsel and all defendants must appear personally at any final hearing held by a district judge.

         Voir Dire Questions and Jury Instructions

         At the final pretrial conference the court shall finalize the voir dire questions and create a set of legally accurate jury instructions that contains every instruction the court might need at trial (with the possible exception of a theory of defense instruction). Toward this end, the court will circulate voir dire questions and a packet of jury instructions prior to the parties' submission deadline for the final pretrial conference. These are the drafts from which we will work at the final pretrial conference.

         Pursuant to F.R. Crim. Pro. 30 and not later than the submission deadline, the parties must submit any proposed additions, deletions, or edits to the court's drafts. Each proposed edit to or deletion of a court draft voir dire question must be set forth in a separate paragraph and must cite by number to the question at issue. Each proposed new question must be set forth in a separate paragraph and numbered for ease of reference.

         Each proposed edit or deletion of a court draft jury instruction must be set forth in a separate paragraph and must cite by page number to the court's draft. Each proposed new jury instruction must be set forth in a separately numbered paragraph. When applicable, a party must provide adequate citation to any legal authority for any proposed edit, deletion or addition of a jury instruction.

         Although a defendant is not required to reveal a theory of defense instruction prior to the close of the government's case in chief, it is helpful and efficient to discuss such instructions at the final pretrial conference whenever possible. Therefore, the court encourages defendants to provide draft theory of defense instructions for consideration on the record at the final pretrial conference. If a defendant is not willing to do this, then the court asks that the defendant submit his or her theory of defense instruction to the court ex parte and in camera for review prior to trial.

         Motions in Limine and Notice of Intent To Offer Evidence

         Although the trial judges make the final decisions on motions in limine and other evidentiary issues, all such issues must be raised at the final pretrial ...


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