Heated Robicheaux Pretrial Hearing In Orange County

In a case that has seen multiple twists and turns, state prosecutors Friday asked a judge to drop most of the charges against a Newport Beach surgeon and his girlfriend who have been accused of drugging and raping several women. Michele Gile reports.

Video Transcript

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- You're looking over at the jury box.

- No, I'm not looking at the jury box, and stop being so disrespectful to the Court. Ma'am, would you please have a seat. I'm talking to Ms. Martinez, why are you interrupting me?

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JEFF VAUGHN: Tensions flared in an Orange County courtroom today as a couple waits to learn if headline making charges against them will be dismissed. Welcome back to CBS2 News at 5 o'clock, I'm Jeff Vaughn.

PAT HARVEY: And I'm Pat Harvey. And CBS2 Orange County reporter Michele Gile is live to show us what went down and the Grant Robicheaux service the case, Michele.

MICHELE GILE: Well, three women are now saying that they no longer want to take part in this case. According to the Deputy Attorney General, the victims, who have waited more than two years to go before a judge, say that they have been dragged through the mud by the Orange County district attorney's office.

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- The main issue is 2 and 1/2 years of yuck, yuck.

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MICHELE GILE: The judge presiding over the Grant Robicheaux Serisa Riley Newport Beach rape case calls it the never ending story. Today there was another twist in the saga which became national news in 2018. The attorney general, now prosecuting the case, made a move to dismiss several counts involving three of the seven women. Charges against the couple include kidnapping and sexual assault. There are allegations that the doctor had date rape drugs and weapons in his home.

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- We believe that the Jane Does in this case are telling the truth. We have no questions about their credibility. Unfortunately, there are deficiencies in those statements, which are no fault of the Jane Does, which create deficiencies in the evidence. Which is why we cannot prove certain charges beyond a reasonable doubt in this case.

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MICHELE GILE: But the judge wasn't making any decisions yet about whether charges involving some of the women should be dropped.

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- They all seem to have the same or similar history of what they say they occurred to both defendants. It's almost like a playbook. And these folks apparently never knew each other.

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MICHELE GILE: The hearing in Steven Bromberg's courtroom was tense.

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- Ma'am, would you please have a seat. Ma'am, would you please have a seat. I'm talking to Ms. Martinez, why are you interrupting me?

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MICHELE GILE: Robicheaux lawyer Philip Cohen was one of those admonished during a testy exchange.

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- You're looking over at the jury box.

- No, I'm not looking at the jury box, and stop being so disrespectful to the Court.

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MICHELE GILE: At one point, Judge Bromberg accused the attorney general of making a, quote, "veiled threat" in its written brief to dismiss charges.

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- Judge, here's what we want you to do-- here's what we demand you to do. And you know if you don't, you can't appoint a special prosecutor. Now, why in the world would a prosecutor use that type of terminology?

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MICHELE GILE: A deputy attorney general insisted that the court is not being threatened. The judge will make his decision on the criminal charges July 20th. That's the latest, live in Laguna Niguel, Michele Gile. Back to you.