In hearings at the Senate Judiciary Committee, U.S. Magistrate Judge S. Kato Crews, a Biden nominee for a federal district court position, was asked by Sen. John Kennedy (R-La) “how would you analyze a Brady motion.” His response was “in my four and a half years on the bench, I don’t believe I’ve had the occasion to address a Brady motion.”
Kennedy then asked “do you know what a Brady motion is?” Crews replied “it’s not coming to mind at the moment.” Kennedy told Crews that “it comes from the case of Brady v. Maryland.” This prompted Crews to falsely assert “oh, yeah it’s a Second Amendment thing.”
Actually, a Brady motion is what a defense attorney files when he believes the prosecution has withheld evidence vital to his client’s case. This issue is particularly pertinent since Tucker Carlson aired videos of the January 6, 2021 Capitol incursion showing that some persons charged with violent insurrection were unarmed and peacefully wandering around inside without attacking any of the Capitol Police. An attorney for Jacob Chansley–a man pressured into accepting a guilty plea that netted him a four-year prison sentence–pointed out that this video evidence of his client’s obvious peaceful behavior was neither presented by the prosecutor nor shared with the defendant.
Of course, evidence of the innocence of some of the Capitol protesters isn’t the only kind of evidence withheld by those prosecuting January 6 cases. Victoria White, who tried to stop two men from breaking windows, was savagely beaten by Capitol Police officers on that day after the flow of the crowd carried her inside the building. Videos of these events were also withheld by the prosecutors.
Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre defended both the ignorance and dishonesty of Crews by insisting that “given that Judge Crews had never heard of Brady during more than four years on the bench how important could a ‘Brady Motion’ be. Not even the President himself is held to as high of a standard of knowledge and integrity as Sen. Kennedy is trying to impose on this young Black court nominee. This kind of racism has got to stop and Kennedy needs to apologize for trying to humiliate a Black man.”