Ennis in court on state’s motion regarding counsel

Ennis in court on state’s motion regarding counsel

A former Spokane Police sergeant convicted of rape was back in court Friday afternoon, on a motion filed by prosecutors.

Gordon Ennis was found guilty of second-degree rape in March of this year. He has yet to be sentenced for the crime, having requested new counsel and asked for a new trial in the months since the jury handed down its verdict.

A motion to discuss a new trial is scheduled for August 10. Friday’s motion hearing was devoted to Ennis’ current lawyer Mark Vovos.

Vovos formerly represented John Gately. The former police guild president was listed as a witness in Ennis’ trial, but ultimately invoked his Fifth Amendment rights and did not testify.

When Ennis announced at his first scheduled sentencing hearing that he wanted Vovos to represent him, the state asked for an on-the-record proceeding to suss out any possible conflict of interest Vovos might face.

Spokane County Superior Court Judge Maryann Moreno eventually allowed the substitution of counsel in May.

According to court documents, the state moved for another proceeding to determine any possible conflict of interest. That hearing was held Friday.

The court discussed a recent filing in which Vovos appeared to be speaking on behalf on John Gately. Vovos told the court he had written the filing, but said he was no longer representing Gately and, to his knowledge, his former client had sought new representation.

After consulting with Ennis, Moreno allowed the case to move forward. A presentment was set for August 17. The court will request Gately and his new counsel to be present for that proceeding.