A man convicted last year of murdering his daughter’s boyfriend is asking the state Supreme Court to let him out of prison while he appeals the conviction.
Lawyers for Daniel Robbins filed a motion on Aug. 29 seeking bail, noting that they are already seeking from the state’s highest court a new trial for the former Gaming Control Board employee.
Robbins was convicted of shooting to death 21-year-old Chris Mundy on Aug. 18, 2011 and injuring a then-14-year-old boy who was with the victim.
A local District Court judge sentenced Robbins to 22 years to life in prison in March. Robbins’ lawyers immediately appealed, making a number of claims, including allegations of juror and prosecutorial misconduct.
“The four primary issues raised (in the appeal) are: 1.) Mr. Robbins was not allowed to fully develop his defense before the jury, 2.) there was a failure to allow jury instructions necessary for Mr. Robbins to present the theory of his case, 3.) prosecutorial misconduct, and 4.) juror misconduct. Each of these errors warrants reversal,” the newly-filed defense motion states.
Similar issues were raised during the trial. For instance, the defense didn’t like some of the forceful wording prosecutors used in describing how Robbins angrily shot Mundy in the driveway of the older man’s Pahrump home. The defense also raised questions after the mother of the 14-year-old victim bumped into a juror in a courthouse bathroom. The District Court judge who presided over the trial dismissed the defense arguments on both counts.
The Nye County District Attorney’s Office rebutted Robbins’ latest filing with a motion of its own on Thursday. It reads like a Cliff Notes version of events leading up to Robbins’ November 2012 conviction, including that multiple judges denied Robbins release on bail on seven separate occasions, including a writ of habeas corpus denied by the Supreme Court in May 2012.
“The defendant shoulders the ‘heavy burden’ of demonstrating to this court that in light of the nature of the conviction and life sentence that he is neither a flight risk, nor a risk to the community,” the response filed by the DA’s office reads. “He has not overcome that burden.”
The prosecution’s opposition to Robbins’ latest attempt also rebuts claims made in Robbins’ motion that he is a family man, is not a flight risk and harbors no violent tendencies — Robbins and his attorneys continue to maintain that his gun went off accidentally and that Mundy would be alive today had the young man not come over to Robbins’ home unannounced in the middle of the night.
The DA’s filing rehashes the fact that before Mundy’s death, Robbins had a confrontation with his daughter, who wanted to move out of the family home and into a place with her boyfriend. Robins threatened at one point to dismantle the young woman’s car. When he believed his daughter was pregnant, he also pointed a gun at her, according to a statement she gave detectives from jail the night Mundy was killed.
In fact, jailhouse recordings made of Robbins talking with his wife caught more than a few vulgar comments directed at his teenage daughter, including a statement that the then 19-year-old “can go f—- herself,” which one judge in the case made the defendant sound like “the epitome of a family man.”
It remained unclear Thursday when the Supreme Court was likely to decide on Robbins’ now eighth attempt to get out of custody.