October 30, 2008
2 men facing bomb-possession charges say police conducted illegal searches of trailer, basement
St. Paul police had no authority to break into and seize a cargo trailer rented by a group of protesters at last month’s Republican National Convention, attorneys for two men facing bomb-possession charges argue.
- A d v e r t i s e m e n t
In motions filed in federal court, the attorneys for the Texas duo say because police didn’t get a warrant to search the trailer, the things found inside it — homemade riot shields — should not be allowed as evidence in their upcoming trial.
The attorneys also claim other evidence involving eight Molotov cocktails found in the basement of the men’s St. Paul apartment building should be thrown out. The reason: Even though police had a search warrant for the building, it didn’t specify a basement search.
“It’s our position that the Constitution didn’t get suspended when the Republican National Convention came to town,” said one of the attorneys, Jeffrey DeGree, who represents David Guy McKay.
Last month, a federal grand jury indicted McKay, 23, and Bradley Neal Crowder, 22, on charges they possessed Molotov cocktails during their stay in St. Paul. The government contends they were part of an Austin, Texas-based protest group that intended to use the incendiary devices to destroy property and injure law enforcement officers during the convention.
DeGree also has filed a motion requesting the government disclose the name of the informant it used to infiltrate the protest group. Independent sources, who declined to be named, have confirmed the informant was Brandon Darby, also of Austin, a former organizer for a grass-roots group that helped with relief efforts in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.
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