The following is taken from the KCRA Channel 3 website regarding the Eco Terrorism trial of Eric McDavid. The federal government was either intentionally or unintentionally in possession of documents that helped prove the defense’s case that McDavid was a nerdy kid who was trying lured into an alleged conspiracy to commit “Eco-Terrorism” through a romantic involvement with a female F.B.I. operative.
jail Thursday, according to the defendant’s attorney.
A man who was convicted of plotting to blow up the Nimbus Dam on the American River, in addition to other government targets, was ordered to be released from
Eric McDavid’s sentence was vacated in federal court in Sacramento after McDavid pleaded guilty to conspiring to destroy a government institution, according to the U.S. District Attorney.
McDavid, of Foresthill, and two others were arrested in 2006 on charges of trying to blow up the Nimbus Dam, which lies on the border of Folsom and Rancho Cordova.
McDavid was convicted in that case, and his appeals were exhausted.
On Sept. 27, 2007, McDavid was convicted of conspiring to destroy various targets, including the United States Forest Service Institute of Forest Genetics in Placerville, with fire or explosives, according to the U.S. District Attorney’s Office.
McDavid was sentenced to 235 months in prison for ecoterrorism.
After his conviction and sentence, McDavid filed an appeal and motion attacking the prosecution on a variety of grounds.
That motion tipped off the government that some documents were unintentionally not given to the McDavid’s defense team during the trial.
Those documents were handed over to the defense soon after they were discovered.
The U.S. District Attorney said even though the documents do not necessarily show McDavid committed a crime, it could be possible that without them, the court would ask for a retrial.
However, McDavid’s attorney told KCRA 3 the newly released documents support the defense’s argument that McDavid was entrapped through romance by an FBI informant.
At the parties’ joint request on Thursday, the U.S. District court judge vacated McDavid’s original conviction and allowed him to enter a guilty plea of a lesser charge, which carried a reduced penalty.
The judge then sentenced him to nine years, which he has already served while awaiting trial.
The U.S. District Attorney said the government decided not to retry the case because both parties were in agreement because of the cost associated with a retrial.
You can also see a brief interview with McDavid’s attorney, Mark J. Reichel, at the following Sacramento Bee link.