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By Dan Rudy 

Salard appeal denied, sentencing next month

 


The former Wrangell

doctor convicted of child pornography charges last summer has had his motion for a new trial rejected.

Greg Salard is still awaiting sentencing, which has been moved to Feb. 8 due to his counsel’s unavailability in January. Previously sentencing had been scheduled for Jan. 4, and defense attorney Steven Wells would be busy with another trial on that date.

Salard took on Wells’ services following his conviction by a Juneau jury on July 28. On Nov. 13 he filed a motion for a new trial, stating he had been poorly represented by his public defender, Cara McNamara.

Specifically, Salard argued she had been unprepared to defend him over prior allegations of child molestation if cross-examined, and that this prompted his decision not to testify on his own behalf during the six-day trial.

On Dec. 18 District Judge Anthony Burgess rejected this request, explaining the legal precedent used to determine whether to allow a new trial based on an ineffective assistance of counsel claim did not fit Salard’s situation.

In its filing to oppose a new trial, the prosecution argued McNamara’s advice to Salard not to testify was “entirely reasonable,” suggesting his testimony would have introduced “significant negative information about his sexual interest in children.” As such, the government’s case rested solely on material recovered from Salard’s computer at the time of his arrest in October 2014, and did not include any evidence from the abuse allegations made in 2007.

For the distribution and receipt of child pornography, Salard faces possibly 10 to 40 years in prison and up to $500,000 in fines. After his sentencing, he may be extradited to Louisiana to face trial for aggravated rape; if convicted, he faces life in prison.

 

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