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4:18-cr-03070-JMG-CRZ Doc # 25 Filed: 08/12/18 Page 1 of 4 - Page ID # 42

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT


FOR THE DISTRICT OF NEBRASKA

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,

Plaintiff,
4:18CR3070
vs.
GOVERNMENT RESPONSE TO
MOTION TO REVIEW DETENTION
JOSEPH MELTON,

Defendant.

COMES NOW the United States of America, by and through the undersigned Assistant

United States Attorney, and respectfully requests the Court deny the defendant’s motion to

review detention and deny the defendant’s request for an additional hearing on detention. The

defendant has failed to demonstrate any material change in fact that would impact the Court’s

original determination that the defendant is a danger to the community.

1. At the initial appearance on July 13, 2018, Melton asked for a hearing on the issue of

detention (Filing No. 9). This Court received evidence, including testimony from S.A. Cory

Shelton (Filing No. 12), the Pretrial Services’ report, and an affidavit from a hearing regarding a

protection order that was granted against Melton (Filing No. 11). After hearing all of the

evidence, this Court found that Melton presents “a risk of harm to the public” if released (Filing

No. 17 at ECF p.1). This Court also observed that Melton has a history of threatening others

(Id.), and that Melton was dishonest with ATF and Pretrial Services, showing a “substantial risk

of noncompliance with supervision…” (Id.).

2. In his motion for release, Melton argues his criminal history was overstated (Filing

No. 23 at ECF p.1). In support of that, Melton offers a printout showing that an earlier charge of

third degree assault was later reduced to “intimidation by phone call” (Filing No. 23 at ECF p.5,
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Defendant’s Exhibit A). Defendant’s Exhibit A fails to demonstrate that Melton’s criminal

history was overstated as the Pretrial Services report noted for that offense that the “judgment

[was] set aside” (PTS Report p.5). Moreover, that Melton threatened someone over the phone

does nothing to alleviate any concerns about the danger he poses to the public.

3. Melton also offers a self-serving statement that he understands the need to be honest

(Filing No. 23 at ECF p.3), but that statement is no different than what Melton’s counsel stated at

the first hearing on detention.

4. Melton discusses the numerous voicemails the government received from people

within the community expressing great concern for their safety should Melton be released from

custody (Filing No. 23 at ECF pp. 2-3). Melton states that those calls must have been from his

political opponents, and argues that the concerns are not real. There are three problems with

Melton’s argument. The first is that this is the same argument Melton raised at the first hearing,

and so he is not presenting new evidence that could affect the decision to detain Melton. The

second problem is that this Court was clear at the first hearing that the voicemails played no part

in this Court’s decision to detain Melton. Since the voicemails did not affect the decision to

detain Melton, Melton again is not presenting new evidence that should change the decision to

detain him. And third, Melton has never heard the voicemails, and so he has no way of knowing

whether his characterization of them is accurate or not.

5. Regarding the protection order, Melton states that at the state court hearing pertaining

to the protection order, he offered evidence showing that person who sought the protection order

was lying (Filing No. 23 at ECF p.2). If Melton is talking about the same protection order that

this Court received into evidence at the first hearing, then Melton overlooks a critical fact. The

court who heard the evidence granted the protection order. The request for the protection order

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must have had some merit, because after hearing the evidence, the protection order was granted.

Moreover, this is the same argument Melton raised at the first hearing, and this does not amount

to new evidence that would change the decision to detain Melton.

6. Review of a detention order is governed by 18 U.S.C. § 3145(b). The statute provides:

“If a person is ordered detained by a magistrate judge…the person may file with the court having

original jurisdiction over the offense, a motion for revocation or amendment of the order.”

Having not appealed the original order, and presenting no new evidence in his new motion that

should change the decision to detain Melton, the government submits that Melton’s motion

should be denied without a hearing.

7. If this Court were to grant a hearing, the government will call S.A. Cory Shelton.

Agent Shelton has continued with the investigation, and has obtained new evidence of Melton

resorting to dishonesty. New evidence has been uncovered about Melton doing things such as,

for example, forging, or directing others to forge, documents related to the sale of firearms.

This evidence will help to show that Melton’s dishonesty with ATF during the investigation, and

with the Pretrial Services’ Office, were not rare occasions of dishonesty, but rather were part of a

pattern of dishonesty. Moreover, Agent Shelton will testify about newly uncovered evidence of

Melton being a danger to the community by doing things such as discharging firearms within

city limits.

WHEREFORE, the United States respectfully requests this Court deny the defendant’s

request for a new hearing as the defendant has not cited to any new evidence that might change

the decision to detain Melton.

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Respectfully submitted this 12th day of August, 2018.

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff


JOSEPH P. KELLY
United States Attorney

By: s/ Matthew R. Molsen


MATTHEW R. MOLSEN, #22693
Assistant U.S. Attorney
487 Federal Building
100 Centennial Mall North
Lincoln, NE 68508
Tel: (402) 437-5241
Fax: (402) 437-5390
E-mail: matthew.molsen@usdoj.gov

CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE

I hereby certify that on August 12, 2018, I electronically filed the foregoing with the
Clerk of the Court using the CM/ECF system which sent notification of such filing to all
registered participants.

s/ Matthew R. Molsen
Assistant U.S. Attorney

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