The prosecution had one more chance to make its case against the Reese family. The final closing argument was by Ms. Armijo.
Ms. Armijo told the Jury they deal with the devil all the time. She stated Mr. Gorence could say that, but pointed out that when you play in hell, and they did play with Roman, there are no angels in hell. She justified this by saying unfortunately in a lot of investigations there are certain steps that have to be done, and you are damned if you do, and damned if you don’t.
She told the Jury that in 2009 there was not enough probable cause to arrest Roman. She said with the aircraft there was not enough probable cause to arrest Roman, and they had to keep building a case until they had enough probable cause and they didn’t want to be premature.
Ms. Armijo asked the Jury why did Terri Reese cover herself with the call to officer Batts. Ms. Armijo suggested when Terri checked the registry to see who owned the weapon for the government, she realized she’d better do something so she called LSCO Batts and told him certain things.
Ms. Armijo pointed out that by the way, S/A Valles (sp?) was the senior agent. But Terri only told law enforcement just enough to do their job. However, once Roman became involved, it played out differently.
Ms. Armijo reminded them in November of 2010 Roman purchased some ammunition. Terri didn’t place any calls to ATF, and when he purchased a 50 caliber they didn’t call that in. Ms. Armijo suggested the reason Terri called was to cover her ass in case it ever came back to her, which is exactly what happened.
Ms. Armjio asked the Jury how could they find the Reeses had knowledge, not just banter and puff. She pointed to the July 29, 2011 undercover sting. She mentioned Ryin telling Roman that if more than two handguns are sold that a multiple handgun sales report must be made and that ATF will know, with Roman replying it was ok, no problem. She pointed out Ryin replied that was fair enough.
Ms. Armijo pointed to other statements. Roman told them on June 15th that he was taking stuff to Mexico to make money, and on July 7th that he had the money but she (the undercover agent) would do the paperwork, asking if Ryin wanted him to give her the money.
Ms. Armijo asked the Jury to remember Terri joking about the 4473 form and telling the undercover agent she didn’t pass, and asked the Jury why wouldn’t that matter.
Ms. Armijo alleged that there was other knowledge that Rick and Terri knew the 50 caliber was going to Mexico for cartel purposes, and reminded them of Roger Morris’ testimony that they could go shooting in Casa Grande, Mexico with the cartel. She told the Jury this was knowledge, not car shop talk, not puff.
Ms. Armijo stated there was a lack of calls to the ATF, and she pointed to October 13th regarding the multiple firearms report of Penny Torres’ which was due on the same day.
Ms. Armijo explained to the Jury that the government doesn’t have to show a contract to show a conspiracy. The government is not required. Actions show agreement, she told them.
Ms. Armijo told the Jury the government can infer knowledge from their actions. She added it is very simple, and provided an example. When she returns home and sees hopscotch marking on her driveway, and chalk on the kids hands, she doesn’t have to see them having fun on the sidewalk. There is circumstantial evidence.
Ms. Armijo told them to look at the Reese’s actions. She told them the government doesn’t have to prove every doubt, just reasonable doubt and urged the Jury to use their common sense.
Ms. Armijo told the Jury also there was no evidence Roman was given (not heard) by the the Cartel. He wasn’t charged because of the proffer letter January 26, 2011. (Ms. Armijo’s next comments were not completely heard, something involving …. anything people say… used against… can’t use other statements against them…) Ms. Armijo called it a red herring used by the defense in an attempt distract.
Ms. Armijo addressed the tax credibility issue and explained how the defense said they paid their taxes, but the Jury would see there was no money to paid to the government on taxes.
Ms. Armijo reminded the Jury Terri said she never changed a 4473, the inspector testified she had taken some out of the pile and was told she couldn’t do that. She pointed out the defense didn’t cross examine on that issue and things like that go to credibility.
Ms. Armijo stated the government is not on trial. She told the Jury they were there because of Roman. Three people cooperated. Penny Torres cooperated. Roman cooperated and his wife cooperated. She reminded them Roman talked about New Deal, and even the government didn’t believe him, but the government investigated. His cooperation in this case was shown by video.
Ms. Armijo asked why this case. She explained the guns are lawful, but they must be purchased legally, and stated they shouldn’t wind up in the wrong hands. She described the (sale of) weapons as purposeful action, putting guns in the hands of criminals.
She stated the government knows why. It is not a political expression. She reminded the Jury Rick Reese said his motive was that guns defend people. But, she informed the Jury that this doesn’t give them the right to put guns in the wrong hands.
Ms. Armijo reminded the Jury they took an oath to decide this case on the facts of the law.
She concluded with reminding the Jury they are not supposed to have bias, but to evaluate what was before them and to hold the Reeses accountable for those facts and to see the violence in Mexico.
The government rested its case shortly after 4:00pm.
The Jury was told the evidence (guns and ammunition) would be available to them as needed, but left in the courtroom for safekeeping. They were instructed to select a foreperson, review the jury instructions and understand the legal basics. They were reminded they were bound by their oath to follow the law as read by the Judge. The Jury was told they never have to explain their decision to anyone, and that each of them must decide for themselves. There were to consult with the other jurors, and it was okay to change their minds.