Oct 31, 2016

Will the charge against Ewa Misztal for the alleged death of her baby be dismissed?

The defense motion to dismiss the charge against Ewa Misztal has been taken under submission by Judge Joyce Hinrichs after hearing arguments this morning from both Deputy District Attorney Brie Bennett and Misztal's attorney, Public Defender Casey Russo.

Judge Hinrichs said she hopes to have a written ruling before trial confirmation on November 8 or an oral ruling in court that afternoon.

Mr. Russo started out though by referring to California Proposition 115 and what testimony could be allowed.

"There are limits to 115 testimony," said Mr. Russo. "The prosecution has exceeded those limits in this case. The People's primary evidence is the officer." Mr. Russo said that APD Detective Todd Dokweiler has no medical expertise.

The he brought up some of the same points he argued at the preliminary hearing: "there were no witnesses to the assault; evidence of assault; that the People claimed that the injuries to the baby were intentional and could have been due to a pre-existing condition.

All this had been argued at the preliminary hearing by Mr. Russo.  Ewa Misztal was  held to answer to the charge after the hearing despite that argument.

Ms. Bennett responded that the "defense  was asking for a standard that simply does not exist."

She said the cases cited by "the defense are on point; however in neither case was the information set aside.'

Ms. Bennett said that Detective Dokweiler is familiar with Dr. Mark Super, who performed the autopsy and Detective Dokweiler was at the autopsy and took several photos of the injuries.

"Even without Dr. Super's opinion, there is enough for a holding order."

Ms.Bennett mentioned that Miztal's version of what happened changed. She added that after speaking with Mizstal, Detective Dokweiler followed up with Dr. Super for clarification on injuries.

Dr. Super had notified the District Attorney that the report was ready and the autopsy report will be given to the defense today.

Oct 27, 2016

"We cannot provide defense with what does not exist"

A motion to dismiss the charge against Ewa Misztal as well as a motion for discovery was scheduled for this afternoon.

Public Defender Casey Russo is representing Misztal. Deputy District Attorney Stacey Eads is prosecuting this case. She is presently doing jury selection for the Thomas Lusk case.

Deputy District Attorney Brie Bennett appeared in court this afternoon for the People. The People are opposing both motions. The 995 motion was continued and specially set for 11 a.m. on October 31.

Oct 6, 2016

Defense files motion to dismiss case against Polish citizen charged with the death of her baby

Ewa Misztal, the Polish citizen charged with the alleged death of her baby, has a motion hearing this afternoon for discovery.

Her attorney, Mr. Casey Russo, filed a 995 motion to dismiss the case on September 30.

That hearing is scheduled for October 27. The defense has also subpoenaed records from Mad River Hospital.

Some discovery was provided to the defense before the court hearing but that motion was continued and will be heard with the 995 motion on October 27.

Sep 27, 2016

Jury trial set for Ewa Misztal on Nov 21; she gets teary eyed as she sees her family in court from Poland

This afternoon Ewa Misztal, the Polish citizen arrested in Arcata for the alleged death of her baby, was  arraigned on information for her jury trial. She entered a plea of not guilty, time was not waived, and the date for her jury trial is November 21.

Mr. Casey Russo who is representing her said he was going to request a date for discovery because he has not even received the autopsy report yet. He has also subpoenaed records "crucial to the case".

Misztal's family was in court, a man and a woman, likeltly her mother because Mr. Russo referred to her as Mrs. Misztal. She was sobbing in court and had a Polish interpreter with her. Miztal got teary eyed as she saw her family.

The alleged charge is the same that she was held to answer after the preliminary hearing: Count 1 Felony PC 273ab Assault on a child causing death.

Misztal is being represented by Public Defender Casey Russo. Bail is one million. 

If convicted, the sentence for this charge is 25 years to life.

Previous post (with preliminary hearing information and all coverage on this case):


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