HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT and The Huntsville Times) – Attorneys for accused UAH shooter Amy Bishop are again seeking to subpoena Alabama’s finance director and other state officials in an effort to secure expert witness fees before Bishop’s Sept. 10 trial.
The subpoena request comes less than a week after the Alabama Supreme Court, on procedural grounds, refused Bishop’s request to order that fees be paid.
Bishop, 47, could face the death penalty if convicted of the Sept. 12, 2010, killing of three fellow University of Alabama in Huntsville biology faculty members. She is also charged with three counts of attempted murder.
Madison County Circuit Judge Alan Mann has ordered the state to make payments on three occasions, but the state comptroller’s office has declined, saying Alabama law did not authorize them. Bishop’s attorneys have asked Mann to hold the state in contempt for nonpayment.
Bishop’s attorneys Barry Abston, Roy Miller and Robert Tuten have signaled they plan to argue that Bishop is not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect. They have argued that mental health evaluations and diagnostic testing of Bishop are necessary for that defense and have asked the court to order the State of Alabama to make so-called “interim payments.” Alabama’s practice has long been to only pay attorneys and related expenses when a case is completed.