Judge Releases Shooting Defendant Following Dispute Over Undisclosed Evidence 

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On April 3, DC Superior Court Judge Michael O’Keefe released a shooting defendant following the prosecution’s continuance of the trial due to undisclosed evidence. 

Daniel Cary, 29, and Chantel Stewart, 33, are charged with two counts of assault with intent to kill while armed, aggravated assault knowingly while armed, and assault with a dangerous weapon, among other charges, for their alleged involvement in a non-fatal shooting incident that an individual suffering from a gunshot wound to the back. The incident occurred on July 22, 2021, on the 4000 block of First Street, SE. 

According to court documents, the victim and her sister were in a vehicle following a verbal dispute with some individuals when they were targeted by gunfire.

During the hearing, Alvin Thomas and Jesse Winograd, Cary and Stewart’s defense attorneys, alerted the court that they are having difficulty understanding why their case, which was scheduled for trial on March 25, cannot proceed. 

Following a private conversation with the prosecution, Judge O’Keefe told Thomas and Winograd that the prosecution is experiencing delays due to unspecified evidence that cannot be shared with the defense just yet. 

Thomas filed multiple oral motions, including a motion to dismiss the case without prejudice or release Cary, a motion for a speedy trial violation, as well as a Brady Violation for failing to disclose evidence favorable to the defendant.

According to Thomas, it is prejudicial for Cary be prosecuted for an offense or remain detained waiting for the prosecution to disclose evidence they should have disclosed years ago. 

Thomas deemed Cary a “productive citizen,” stating that the only conviction he has was for a misdemeanor trespassing charge, and he has ample support in the community. 

Although Stewart has been on release since 2021, Winograd joined Thomas’ motions. 

“I hear your frustration,” said Judge O’Keefe, but ultimately stated there is no basis to dismiss the case against the defendants. 

According to Judge O’Keefe, the speedy trial motion wasn’t necessary at this point because parties scheduled a trial for Jan. 6, 2025. 

However, he agreed with Thomas that Cary should not have to remain detained as the prosecution figures out when they can disclose the outstanding evidence. 

Judge O’Keefe granted the release motion, allowing Cary remain on home confinement with GPS monitoring. 

He also imposed a stay away order from the victim and her sister, adding “stay away from everybody at this point.” 

Parties are slated to reconvene July 16.

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