Assistant Attorney General Andrew Bauch’s latest motion in the Adam Longoria case defends the State’s earlier motions, including one that defense attorneys claim placed their client in danger.
Longoria had to be placed in protective custody after the State filed unsealed motions that talked about his previous work as a confidential informant for the Great Bend Police Department and Kansas Bureau of Investigation, according to a motion filed last September by the Death Penalty Defense Unit.
"Upon it becoming public, Mr. Longoria had multiple inmates in the Sedgwick County Jail beat on his door, call him a snitch, and threaten his safety," the motion written by attorneys Tim Frieden and Jeffrey Wicks states. Their motion sought to have the case dismissed, claiming the State circumvented Barton County District Judge Hannelore Kitts’ gag order — and prejudiced prospective jurors — by making editorial comments in its motions.
"Why the sudden change in position on keeping this fact quiet until there was no other option?" the defense attorneys asked in their motion. "Could it be because the State wanted to get ahead of the issue? Could it be to place Mr. Longoria’s life in immediate danger by having those with whom he is housed know that he has worked for the State? Whatever the reason, there was no relevant reason for that information to be made public."
Bauch’s response, filed in December, suggests other reasons inmates may have beat on Longoria’s door.
"Defendant alleges inmates from the Sedgwick County Jail beat on his cell door and threatened him after the motion was filed. Did the inmates pound on his door because: (1) he was an informant; (2) he is a defendant facing criminal charges of the murder and burning of a 14-year-old girl; or (3) simply because he is located in a place (where) hundreds of other involuntarily confined persons are confined, and civility is not the first order of business? Regardless of the reason, ... the State continues to advocate for justice, and the case will be based on the evidence."
Longoria is charged with the attempted rape and premeditated murder of Alicia DeBolt, 14, on or about Aug. 21, 2010, in Barton County. His trial is scheduled to start on March 26, and the next hearing on pretrial motions will be held Feb. 8.
Initially it was the defense that filed a motion seeking information about Longoria’s work as an informant, but that motion was filed under seal. This allowed the exchange of information while protecting the integrity of related drug investigations. However, Bauch wrote, "On June 29, 2011, the State sought the admission of the defendant’s statements to law enforcement. By this time, the State had determined it was more important to show the defendant’s familiarity with law enforcement, rather than protect the drug investigations. The seal on the defendant’s motion was lifted shortly thereafter."