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For the week of  October 24 - 30, 2001


High penalized for 
not cooperating

Express Staff Writer

Judge James May issued an order on Oct. 16 that could hurt Gail High’s defense at her jury trial for attempted second-degree murder set for Dec. 11.

May issued a court order that will allow the prosecutor to tell the jury that she did not cooperate.

High, 39, allegedly fired a shot at Colleen Kassner on Dec. 16, 2000. Kassner was uninjured.

On Oct. 15, May heard three motions in Blaine County Fifth District Court.

County prosecutor J. Scott James filed a motion that would allow a state psychologist to examine High and a motion to compel discovery.

Defense attorney Doug Nelson filed a motion to prohibit the prosecution from using evidence highly prejudicial to High.

At the hearing, Nelson refused to let a state psychologist examine his client.

In response, May issued his order that "the court will allow the state to present the fact of the defendant’s non-cooperation to the jury."

He also ordered that "the court will consider any additional penalties to the defendant prior to trial."

At the Oct. 15 hearing, the prosecution dropped its motion to compel discovery about two events, since the defense provided the following information.

In May 1990, High is alleged to have tried to throw another woman from a boat she was piloting in Newport Beach Harbor, Calif., by accelerating the boat suddenly.

In another case, High allegedly pulled a pistol on a boyfriend in 1989.

There were no charges filed in either case, Nelson said.

These incidents are the evidence that Nelson is seeking to prohibit the prosecution from using.

A hearing on this motion of limine is set for Nov. 19.

The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.