On October 16, 2012, a Hearing was held to determine if Terri’s bond would be revoked or modified.
At the outset of the hearing, Judge Brack indicated he had received two updates on Terri’s medical condition. He commented he did not know if the prosecutor, Ms. Armijo, had concerns that would lead to a recommendation to revoke Terri’s Bond. Judge Brack informed Terri was living at “the compound” and that the probation officer had indicated to him that there were a lot of firearms on the property, was concerned because Remington lives on the property, and that Remington was allegedly selling guns on the property.
Ms. Hoyle informed the judge that when she visited the property on September 26th there was loose ammunition in the garage, an AR-15 and 4-5 handguns in the back of the house and bayonets in the gun shop. When the judge asked her if the guns were in Terri’s house or Remington’s apartment, Ms. Hoyle informed they were in Remington’s apartment and told the judge his apartment is about 1 mile away but within walking distance. Ms. Hoyle described his apartment as having knives, machetes and bayonets and that they were concerned because Remington lives so close.
Ms. Armijo pointed out that even the Judge at the outset of the hearing described the property as a “compound”. She noted Terri had previously testified that she and her husband own all of the properties, including the property where Remington’s apartment and associated storage area is located. She informed the judge that the safe (in the building where Remington’s apartment is located) belongs to Terri Reese, not Remington, and that these forbidden items were found on the “compound” property. She informed the judge that the conditions of bond were no weapons and that the situation needs to be remedied. Ms. Armijo referenced a pre-trial motion that gave Terri the option to choose a half-way house. She related that Terri indicated she wanted to remain at home and told the government she wasn’t going to leave her house under any circumstances. Ms. Armijo informed the judge that the probation officer was very concerned because weapons were still on the property. She related the probation officer feels Terri is a flight risk. Ms. Armijo stated that Terri’s medical issues have been resolved and that she can go live in Albuquerque given her reaction to the pre-sentencing probation officer. Terri Reese was characterized as a threat to the community.
One of the persons testifying on behalf of the government stated the probation officer(s) was in fear of her life while at “the compound”.
The judge asked a probation officer if what she had heard was a fair characterization of the situation. She indicated there are firearms on the property and recommended Terri live in a half-way house or locate another residence to reside in. She informed that Terri told her the firearms would be removed from the property. She indicated if Terri was to stay on the property a second search of the property would be needed, but her recommendation was Terri live in a halfway house or a second residence. She advised that Terri told her she wanted to stay and would have all firearms removed from the property.
One of the officers felt there would be no issue with Terri on the property if the officers were safe, and the weapons and the gun safe were removed from the property.
Terri’s attorney, Brad Hall, suggested to the Judge that Terri be allowed to address these issues to the Court.
Terri corrected the earlier testimony and informed the judge that Remington’s apartment is approximately one half mile away. She advised that she no longer has access to that building and that Remington doesn’t even let her go back there. She also informed that Remington doesn’t even let her go to the grocery store by herself.
Terri explained to the Judge that she has a 16″ scar from surgery and is just now walking without crutches, and that she will have to go to Albuquerque next week.
Terri explained that she lives on the separate property where the gun store is located. While gesturing towards friends and family in the audience she explained to the judge that she has brought in crews of people to remove things from the property including the gun store. (At least one person from the crew was in the courtroom and prepared to testify to the amount of work and number of people involved.) Terri informed that it would probably take a few more weeks for the crew to continue searching thru the entire property and to remove anything that was remaining from the property. Terri also referenced a number of back and forth conversations she had been having with the probation officers.
Note: There were a few exchanges between Terri and the probation officers during the hearing. Terri and the probation officers apparently have had a number of conversations. There were no allegations that Terri was trying to avoid contact with the probation officers or conceal her location, etc.
Judge Brack informed Terri that he believes that she does have access to all parts of the property and she cannot stay on the property if there are weapons on the “compound”. He told her that the entire 80 acre property must be cleared of all weapons and reminded her of the conditions of bond. He informed her that she will be allowed to stay on the property if she could promise that by midnight Sunday, October 21, 2012 everything would be cleared out. He told her there would be a follow-up inspection on Monday. He admonished her if there was any kind of violation involved, even a single live round of ammunition anywhere on the property, the penalty would be harsh and she would return to jail. Terri acknowledged that she understood.
Terri informed the judge that the residence is heated only by a wood stove and asked the judge for permission to have a chainsaw and axe to cut wood since both of those would probably be considered dangerous weapons. The judge gave her permission for those items.
Probation officer Judy LNU indicated to the judge that she thought it would take the search team approximately 2 days to search the 85 acre property, including the residences, warehouse, shops, Remington’s building, “the tunnel” and the firing range.
Ms. Armijo requested all safes be opened and ready for inspection as they could not open the safe in Remington’s bedroom previously.
Terri’s attorney expressed a concern about the inspection and asked if there was going to be any seizures and that he was concerned that the portions of the property that had been cleaned up so far would become completely trashed again during the search.
The probation officer stated that they would be searching for weapons in the garage, shop, safes, and that they were not going to go thru drawers.
The judge informed Mr. Hall that the officers were not going to mess it up again and that his primary concern is the safety of the officers. Officer safety was something the judge stressed several times. Mr. Hall informed the judge that the entire family had practiced a lifetime of safety.
The bottom line was Judge Brack gave Terri five days to complete removing anything that could be perceived as a weapon from all of the buildings, storage areas and search the entire 85 acre property to find even a single bullet.
Note: One of the issues that arose was Terri was unable to obtain a specific list of items that would be a prohibited item from the probation officer. While some things were obvious, it became apparent during the actual search that some things are not obvious. At some point, the probation officer sent her a list of items deemed dangerous from a googled website instead of a list that specified what the government actually considered prohibited items.
On leaving the courthouse, arrangements were made for the clean-up crews to return.
NOTE: No matter how many times the government keeps calling the storerom under the business a “tunnel”, that doesn’t make it true. It is a storeroom under the business that BATFE knew was used to store excess inventory safely.
Next post: Clean-up efforts continue thru the midnight deadline.