AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — After a back-and-forth between the defense and prosecution in the Bart Reagor Jury Trial, Judge Matthew J. Kacsmaryk denied the defense’s request to interview the jurors. The defense previously argued that the jury may have been biased in their verdict.
This comes after a jury found Reagor guilty of one count of making false statements to a bank while finding him not guilty of two counts of bank fraud. The defense questioned if the jury received “extraneous prejudicial information” during the deliberation, receiving a modified Allen Charge from the court during the proceedings after stating that they were deadlocked.
In the prosecution’s response, the government stated their belief that the defense’s allegations “fail to meet the requisite evidentiary threshold for a post-verdict interview of the jurors,” according to court documents.
In court documents detailing Kacsmaryk’s response to the defense’s motion, he said the court instructed the jury more than 10 times to not discuss the case with anyone, to not read or watch news stories surrounding the case or conduct independent research into the case, as well as related individuals and events.
“The Court finds no evidence that extraneous prejudicial information was improperly brought to the jury’s attention or than an outside influence was improperly brought to bear on any juror,” the documents read.
The documents also stated that the Allen Charge is “‘ not the type of illegal or prejudicial intrusion into the jury process’ that might justify post-verdict interviews.” When considering the Allen Charge, Kacsmaryk said the court considered the length of the trial, the issues which arose during the trial as well as the notes submitted during the trial. The Court ultimately made the determination that the Allen Charge was not coercive.
Prosecution motion regarding issuance of forfeiture
After the defense’s motion was denied, officials with the prosecution made a motion for an order of forfeiture for Reagor. The motion is a request for Reagor to forfeit $1,760,000 obtained as a result of the false statement to a bank that led to his guilty verdict.
According to court documents, the initial indictment included a forfeiture notice advising Reagor that the prosecution would seek forfeiture derived from the proceeds Reagor “obtained directly or indirectly as the result of his (offenses).”
“The notice also advised Reagor that the forfeiture could take the form of a forfeiture ‘money’ judgment, in addition to a specific property forfeiture of $950,951.18 seized from a bank account belonging to Reagor,” the documents read.
Officials with the prosecution are requesting that the Court enter the forfeiture order, with the amount previously seized from Reagor’s bank account be applied “to partly satisfy the money judgment as a substitute asset.” As of Friday, there had not been a response to the motion.
Officials with Amarillo Federal Court previously stated that Reagor is scheduled to be sentenced at 1:30 p.m. Feb. 24, 2022, and faces up to 30 years in federal prison, according to the United States Department of Justice.
This story is developing. Check with MyHighPlains.com for updates