State v. Weber, 2016 MT 138 (June 7, 2016) (Wheat, J.) (5-0, rev’d)
Issue: (1) Whether the district court abused its discretion by refusing to admit the inventory list offered by defense counsel; (2) whether the district court abused its discretion by limiting defense counsel’s examination of defense investigator Peck; and (3) whether defense counsel rendered ineffective assistance of counsel by failing to admit the evidence.
Short Answer: (1) No; (2) no; and (3) yes.
Reversed and remanded for a new trial
Facts: Weber was a janitor at Sydney High School. He was working the night a tool used to cut metal and steel went missing from the high school shop classroom. The principal later identified Weber on surveillance video on the shop the night the plasma cutter disappeared.…