LOGAN — Andrew Lesky who is accused of attempted aggravated murder and other charges, took the stand in 1st District Court Friday, arguing he is not receiving a fair trial and is being treated unlawfully in the Cache County Jail.
The 44-year-old testified for over three hours after Judge Brian Cannell reminded him of his Fifth Amendment Rights, protecting him from being required to testify against himself in his criminal cases.
The defendant acknowledged his rights and then took the stand while his defense attorney, Chad Hutchings, questioned him about his treatment since being arrested in October 2014. Lesky said while he has been in jail, he was kept in lockdown for 87 days.
“I was allowed out of my cell for 30-minutes sometimes, every three-days,” said Lesky. “I was locked in a cell 24-hours a day, three days at a time before being let out for a half-hour or an hour. Then lockdown for another three-days. I didn’t get out for a shower, visits, phones, commissary, and recreation, nothing for seven-or-eight months. I kind of lost count.”
Prosecutors claim Lesky was placed in maximum security for threatening staff, destroying property, refusing to follow orders and other violations of jail rules.
Lesky also believes jail deputies conspired with prosecutors to intercept private mail between him and his former attorney, Shannon Demler. He described how he once wrote a list of names and phone numbers of people to be subpoenaed as witnesses in his defense. The letter was supposed to be mailed to Demler.
“I was housed in lockdown and I asked Deputy Clark if I could do legal mail. Deputy Clark came to my cell, I gave him the legal mail. He closed it in an envelope and sealed it.”
Demler testified previously that he never received that envelope and the letter was not given to him until he asked for a collection of belongings from Lesky’s locker that deputies had been keeping at the jail.
During Friday’s hearing, Judge Cannell asked how the letter could have been placed inside a legal sized envelope, noting it was only folded in half and wouldn’t fit.
Lesky testified that a deputy took the letter with about 13 pieces of other paper, rolled them up and placed them inside an envelope. The defendant explained the envelope was very thick when he sealed it and signed his name across the seal.
During cross examination, county attorney Spencer Walsh asked Lesky about 20 similar complaints he had made while being held in a California jail. He showed the court an article from the Los Angeles Times, reporting how deputies started videotaping Lesky anytime he left his cell to refute future disputes. The article said a judge later rejected his complaints.
Walsh also questioned Lesky about numerous threats he had made to deputies including saying he was going to “skin their caps.” The defendant was also asked about letters he sent to county attorneys threatening them.
The hearing will continue in two weeks when jail deputies will testify.
Judge Cannell told Lesky he has yet to provide substantial evidence to support his complaints to be moved to a different jail or reassigning a new prosecutor.
<span>Lesky was arrested after reportedly trying to shoot his ex-girlfriend outside her apartment. It is also alleged he threatened her and another man with a handgun and a knife. He faces a total of 10 felonies and 17 misdemeanors.</span>
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