Thus far we shared incontrovertible evidence to conclude that two Turkish-Americans were victims of a crime. First a misdemeanor threat crime was committed in the District of Columbia. Second, an early morning arrest was made at the suspect’s home. Third, the suspect pled not guilty. Fourth, after numerous back-and-forth court procedures on determining the sanity of the suspect, the Court appears to have considered that he was sane after all. And just as one would expect some sort of punishment, a nolle prosequi was filed by the Prosecutor which ultimately led to a dismissal of the case of United States v. Lavoie, (2015 CMD 013537, D.C., 2015). The utter outrage - right? Well, not exactly.
The initial court’s order to stay away from Mr. and Mrs. Turk, was never overruled, even though the case was closed. It would seem that the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department (“MPD”), in collaboration with the U.S. Attorney’s office, had a trick up their sleeve. When the case became dismissed on April 12, 2016, it is conceivable to conclude that MPD was engaged in an undercover operation to follow the suspect. It merely took 7 days for the suspect to violate his stay away order. Once he did, another arrest was made and another court case opened up against the suspect in United States v. Lavoie, (2016 CMD 005854, D.C., 2016) for violating his stay away order, a misdemeanor offense. Undercover law enforcement at its best!
Please do not mistake my prejudgment on this case. Everyone is guaranteed due process of law and is presumed absolutely innocent until proven guilty. In this instance, our suspect pled not guilty a second time. But I must confess that I really do not know how this individual is going to debate his way out of this mess, especially with a history of violence in the workplace. Oh indeed Mr. and Mrs. Turk were not the first victims of the suspect’s violence. In 2006 for instance, the suspect was convicted by a Pinellas County - Florida jury on criminal mischief charges in State of Florida v. Lavoie, (Case: CTC0630175MMANO, Pinellas County, Florida, 10/18/2006). He appealed his guilty conviction and lost in Lavoie v. State of Florida, (Case: CRC 07-20 APANO, Fla. 6th Cir. App. Ct., 10/29/2007). The Appellate court found that he:
“…got into a loud argument with some co-workers at a warehouse. He left the immediate work area and stormed towards the French doors of the warehouse exit. The witnesses then heard a loud noise and the sound of the French doors swinging open. The defendant was seen walking away from the French doors – which were damaged and had pieces of wood on the ground. The defendant argu[ed] that there was no proof that he actually intended to damages the doors.”
Although relevant to the circumstances here, I do digress from the case before us. The question is what next? The government appears to be ready in proceeding forward with the case after an elongated and arduous process. The suspect offered to plea bargain, but the Government rejected the bargain on June 17, 2016. At this point, another status hearing is set to commence on July 26, 2016. The trajectory of the case will be more evident, which may end up before a Jury. Until then, we remain for Part Four.