Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Winkler prelim derailed by possible witness conflict


DEFENSE ATTORNEY David Weiner, left, confers with his client Todd Winkler Thursday in court. Democrat photo by Shelly Thorene

From page A3 | October 08, 2012 |

Todd Winkler sat alone in a nearly empty courtroom while his attorney, David Weiner, and the prosecutors, Lisette Suder and Jodie Jensen, entered the courtroom from the judge’s chambers for a preliminary hearing Thursday afternoon.

Judge Douglas C. Phimister handled a matter that had trailed from the morning calendar before calling Winkler’s case.

He noted that, after the conference behind closed doors, the matter was not yet ready to be heard. While many of the materials promised from Monday’s hearing had been given as discovery, additional material was still coming in.

Phimister also announced a potential conflict with one of the witnesses who had been set to testify at the hearing, and that the prosecutors were directed to send information on the witness to Weiner. He noted that the “present counsel might have previously represented the witness,” later indicated that it might have been Weiner in a 2003 case. As such, he declared, the Public Defender’s Office, likely attorney Mark Ralphs, would meet with the witness to determine if there was any conflict. Phimister said that the witness would not be testifying at a preliminary hearing, but might be testifying during a trial, if the case does go to trial.

A “more likely to be closed” hearing will take place on Oct. 17 at 2 p.m. to determine whether a conflict exists.

The judge said that they should not only look at “actual conflict but the appearance of any conflict,” and that the matter “needs to be further investigated.”

Weiner informed the court that “several hundreds of pages” of cell phone records were still in the prosecutor’s custody and had not been provided to him.

Suder replied that the records of the four phones still needed a few redactions and that Weiner would have the documents within a week.

The defense attorney then brought up that he should be able to see any past information and any new information from the witness previously discussed. The judge said that the “information the witness has given could be part of the problem,” and that Ralphs would have to determine if there is a conflict in the case. Weiner claimed that any past materials would not be confidential.

As the attorneys were getting up to leave, with the hearing presumably over, Weiner inquired as to whether Winkler had the right to be at the hearing for the witness. Phimister replied that, as it was a murder trial, Winkler should have the “right to be present at virtually all the hearings.”

The preliminary hearing itself was continued to Oct. 30 at 2 p.m. and, if need be, Oct. 31 at 8 a.m.

Winkler is accused of killing his wife, Rachel, during a fight on Feb. 27 over their impending divorce. He allegedly stabbed his wife in the throat with scissors, but claims that it was she who originally pulled the scissors on him, injuring his hands and inner thighs. He is being held in custody without bail.





District 2 candidate statements tell of goals

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1

Sand Fire nears containment: 66 structures destroyed

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Schedule for Highway 50 blasting closures

By News Release | From Page: A3

Tails wagging over dog park approval

By Julie Samrick | From Page: A3

Quarter-acre fire in Kelsey

By Rebecca Murphy | From Page: A3



My Turn: Privatization of public services

By Mark Belden | From Page: A4

Policy book

By Mountain Democrat | From Page: A4



Comments sign-in policy

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

Save the Guinea Worm

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

Large bangs

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 2 Comments

Private property gets no respect

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

GDPUD management report

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

District 2 supervisorial special election

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

Piano replaced

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5



Ex-Bruin lends a helping hand

By Steven Shaff | From Page: A8 | Gallery

Sierra Sharks finish middle of the pack

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A8

Roundup: July 29, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A8

Taz pull through for SSL trophy

By Patty Pope | From Page: A8



Nuns discover a pleasant place

By Lexi Boeger | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Bargains can be found everywhere

By Democrat Staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

At a glance: Game time

By Mimi Escabar | From Page: B2

Barbecue dinner to benefit Blue Star Moms

By Mount Aukum Winery | From Page: B2

Stagecoach story takes riders on a trip

By Wendy Schultz | From Page: B3

Help needed to make cool ties

By Sew 4 | From Page: B3

Stroke and osteoporosis screenings planned

By Life Line Screening | From Page: B3

Gold Rush Days activities cancelled this year

By Sacramento Convention And Visitors Center | From Page: B4

Master Food Preservers: Tomato time

By Monique Wilber | From Page: B4

Sacramento area museums offer summer fun

By Sacramento Association Of Museums | From Page: B5

Build an author platform at the Library

By El Dorado | From Page: B5



Weather stats 7-29-14

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A2

Building permits 6/2-6/2014

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A2Comments are off for this post

Crime Log: July 17

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A2



Wallace Murrel Thomas

By Contributor | From Page: A2

Merlyn Wilbur Adams

By Contributor | From Page: A2

Lisa Oliver Rose

By Contributor | From Page: A2


Real Estate