A judge Tuesday reviewed the confidential personnel files of slain California Highway Patrol officer Earl Scott and decided there was nothing to disclose to an attorney for his alleged killer, a prosecutor said after the hearing.
Scott was killed during a routine traffic stop in 2006 near Salida. Columbus Allen Jr. II of Stockton is charged with Scott's murder and could face the death penalty.
Stanislaus County Superior Court Judge Hurl Johnson began the review of Scott's CHP file Tuesday to look for potential issues such as allegations of excessive force, disciplinary actions, dishonesty or citizen complaints.
If the had been deemed relevant, Johnson would have turned over the information to San Francisco-based defense attorney John R. Grele.
Grele said any allegations of misconduct against Scott could be used during the sentencing portion of the trial, when fellow officers plan to testify about the strength of Scott's character.
"We're going to have glowing tributes from his buddies at the CHP office," Grele said.
The district attorney's office has charged Allen, 34, with first-degree murder and three special circumstances that could lead to the death penalty. He is being held without bail.
The slain officer was found early Feb. 17, 2006, at the edge of northbound Highway 99, just south of Hammett Road near Salida, holding registration papers for a Nissan Maxima registered to Allen's wife, Bertera.
In October, Johnson agreed to move the murder trial from Modesto because of "pervasive publicity" about the case. Sacramento was chosen as the most convenient location of three counties on a final list of trial locations that included Santa Clara and Contra Costa counties.
The trial is set to begin April 26, but testimony likely won't start until June, attorneys said.
Bee staff writer Merrill Balassone can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 578-2337.