Wednesday, January 22, 2014

FRE 106 Does Not Necessarily Require That Entire Writing Be Admitted

US v. Loya-Medina, 2014 WL 128645, No. 12-1042 (10th Cir. 1/15/14) (unpublished). Tenth Circuit affirms defendant's convictions for possession with intent to distribute meth and conspiracy and 180-month concurrent sentences. Defendant challenged the court's admission of most, but not all, of a notebook alleged to be his drug ledger. The trial court redacted two pages that looked like a child's work. The trial court did not abuse its discretion. FRE 106 codifies partially the common-law rule of completeness. The rule does not require admission of an entire writing or statement, only those that are relevant and necessary to clarify the portion received. Defendant failed to develop the argument that Rule 106 required admission of the redacted pages; there was no reason to believe the unredacted portion was indeed a drug ledger and the evidence at trial showed it was. The district court did not abuse its discretion in denying defendant's motion for mistrial after the AUSA improperly referenced, in the jury's presence, that the court had found that there was a conspiracy for purposes of FRE 801(d)(2)(E). The court's curative instruction was sufficient to cure any prejudice. On the sentencing issue, the defendant failed to properly object to the probation officer's drug quantity calculation. Vague objections just don't cut it. There was no plain error.