Pennington County's chief deputy state's attorney has refused to hand over copies of photo evidence in the case against John Rolfe to his attorney. Rolfe, 59, is accused of three counts of first-degree rape and 12 counts of the manufacture, distribution and possession of child pornography. He is being held in the Pennington County Jail on $1 million bond.
Both state and federal statutes prevent her from releasing the information, Roetzel said. 'I would be guilty of disseminating child pornography,' Roetzel said.
Rolfe's attorney is free to examine the evidence in the Pennington County State's Attorney's Office, which is a common practice in these cases, Roetzel said.
During Wednesday's hearing, Roetzel announced that she plans to ask the court to permanently suspend Rolfe's telephone privileges. Roetzel said later that Rolfe is making harassing telephone calls to people who are peripherally involved in the case. Roetzel and Rolfe's attorney will present their arguments at a motions hearing at 9:15 a.m. on Nov. 1."
Seems to me that an argument exists that the defendant has a de facto deprivation of due process claim. For one thing, without knowing more about the specific facts of this case, we can point to at least one situation over the last year where a defendant, facing 20-years, was able to prove that the alleged "child" in alleged child pornography video was an adult. One could conceive of the situation where absence some prolonged access to such material would deprive the defense counsel of the ability in a similar fashion to explore this defense. Furthermore, there is the question of chain of custody, possession of the "evidence" might permit testing or other forms of examination to establish manipulation of the images, or a source or custody other than the defendant.
I know that I previously related the case involving my client, a 17-year old male high school special ed student and star athlete, who was sexually exploited by his female substitute teacher. In fact my client fathered a child with this educator; although his lawsuit brought after his 21st birthday was tossed by the civil courts because of the restrictive OurState statute of limitations