July 8, 2004
The courtroom was packed with press as Steve Kurtz and his lawyer Paul Cambriaarrived. The proceedings lasted almost two hours. The charges are the same asin the http://www.caedefensefund.org/indictment.pdf indictment.Kurtz pleaded "not guilty." Most of the court time was devoted to working outthe restrictions on the accused (or shall we call him the perp? He certainlydid a good perp walk yesterday).
It is important to note that the harassment which continues to characterize thiscase was evident in the courtroom also. Prosecutor Hochul had filled the jurybox with invitees from the FBI and Joint Terrorist Task Force (Department ofDefense) guys (they were recognized by Cambria and another lawyer). Since theywere not there to give testimony, the purpose of their presence seemed to beto make the situation look more serious legally than it is, thereby hoping toinfluence the judge to make harsher conditions for the accused. However, thejudge did not seem to be intimidated.
Steve will have to see a probation officer every week, and is subject to randomvisits and inspections by the officer to his home. He is also subject to randomdrug testing and may have to wear a drug patch. He can travel within the continentalUnited States but has to get special permission for foreign travel (which hecan do only for business or family reasons, surrendering his passport every timehe returns to the US). He also has to get special permission for any travel thatwould interrupt meeting with the probation officer. Steve will be allowed toorder more "biological materials," but will have to first alert his US probationoffice, his University Health and Bio-safety officer and his lawyer, Paul Cambria.
Upon being booked, Steve did not have to post bond--if he violates any of theconditions he will have to pay a $1000 fine. He is obligated to report parkingtickets or any other official problem, or any interaction with law enforcementauthorities. Upon arraignment Steve was finger-printed, photographed, and hegave a urine sample for drug testing. He passed the test!
Steve is still not talking to the press. The next court date is July 28--Ferrell'sarraignment, which will include a discussion of the trial.