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Trial for former Caldwell officer underway in federal court in Boise

Joseph Hoadley is charged with four felony counts related to allegations that he violated a suspect's civil rights, falsified records and tampered with a witness.
Credit: Paul Boehlke / KTVB
Joseph Hoadley walks out of the federal courthouse in Boise on August 11, 2022.

BOISE, Idaho — The trial of Joseph Hoadley, a former high-ranking Caldwell Police officer, began Monday morning in U.S. District Court in Boise.

Following an investigation by the FBI, a federal grand jury returned an indictment charging Hoadley with four felony counts: deprivation of rights under color of law; destruction, alteration or falsification of records in federal investigations; tampering with a witness by harassment; and tampering with documents.

The charges are related to an incident dating back to 2016 in which Hoadley allegedly punched a man he had taken into custody. In a document filed in August, federal prosecutors say Hoadley bragged and laughed about the incident and showed a video to some fellow officers, some of whom reported it to Caldwell P.D. leaders and to the FBI. Prosecutors also allege that Hoadley wrote a false record about the incident.

Hoadley pleaded not guilty to the charges in August. If found guilty, he could face up to 70 years in federal prison and $1 million in fines.

Jury selection began Monday morning and continued into the afternoon before wrapping up shortly after 1 p.m.. Following a recess for lunch, the prosecution and Hoadley's defense will present opening statements before the prosecution begins presenting evidence and witness testimony.

Cameras are not permitted in federal court proceedings. KTVB reporters Morgan Romero and Alexandra Duggan are in the courtroom, covering the trial and providing updates via Twitter. A live blog follows below, with the most recent development listed first.

5:08 p.m.: Bendawald & Hoadley are friends, he confirms 

5:08 p.m.: Cardwell confirms he also went to the FBI about Bendawald. 

4:52 p.m.: Cardwell began recording phone calls with members of the CPD, even in violation of policy. Says ppl in CPD have come after him for coming forward. 

4:48 p.m.: Cardwell felt he was a "little person compared to a giant". Because of his experience reporting violations in the past, he says he learned he could not to go to higher-ups for fear of retaliation. 

4:44 p.m.: Cardwell says he had been with CPD a long time and had reported a separate incident involving a different officer to the chief prior to Wyant, Chris Allgood (who is now a Caldwell City Councilman). Cardwell says nothing happened then. 

4:40 p.m.: Peterson also questioning Cardwell. He first inquired about how the Street Crimes Unit played a large role in cleaning up the streets of Caldwell, reducing gang violence and making the streets safer. Peterson pointed out that this type of policing is more proactive than reactive. 

4:21 p.m.: Officer Josh Gregory accompanied him to file this complaint. When the prosecutor asked if Cardwell filed any complaints against officers other than Hoadley, Peterson objected.

4:21 p.m.: When Assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine Horwitz asked if this has been hard for him. "It's been super hard on my family and me," he responds, emotional. Cardwell says he told Captain Riley & Chief  Wyant what he saw. He then filed a written formal complaint with the FBI in 2020. 

4:20 p.m.: Cardwell says at a conference Hoadley and other officers were watching a video of Hoadley punching a man who was detained and appeared to be handcuffed. The officers were laughing, so Cardwell asked to see the video. 

4:01 p.m.: Says Hoadley was his supervisor in 2016. 

3:58 p.m.: Joseph Cardwell, detective for Caldwell Police Department is on the stand.

3:57 p.m.: First witness is testifying. 

3:55 p.m.: Peterson says there is no video and no proof that he did the things the government is alleging.

3:55 p.m.: The burden of proof lies on the government 

3:50 p.m.: Peterson argues that Hoadley couldn’t have falsified the report of incident with BH because he did not use excessive force (count 2) 

3:45 p.m.: Ryan Bendawald was also on the Street Crimes Unit. He resigned amid this investigation as well. 

3:44 p.m.: Peterson says the Street Crimes Unit lived by a saying: “DFA” - “Don’t F**k Around” But they cleaned up the streets of Caldwell. That was their MO. 

3:42 p.m.: Peterson: BH doesn’t go to CPD and claim he’s victim of excessive force except when trying to get out of trafficking charge 

3:41 p.m.: Peterson says it’s plausible BH lied about being punched because he had marijuana in the house. 

3:38 p.m.: Hoadley has BH handcuffed & escorted him out. Then there’s an altercation outside. 

3:33 p.m.: Ultimately BH was arrested for trafficking marijuana. 

3:32 p.m.: BH tells officers there’s no reason to search. But officers found 5.5 lb of marijuana downstairs in basement. 

3:32 p.m.: Officer Walker tells the people living there that someone called 911 a few days prior as well. 

3:30 p.m.: Peterson says it’s clear in the video that BH is not fully cooperative, questioning how police got in and why they’re there.

3:29 p.m.: The boy and woman say no one else is in the house. That wasn’t true. B.H. (alleged victim) is ordered to come up the stairs. 

3:25 p.m.: Officer Amber Walker and then-Officer Hoadley walked inside the house. 

3:24 p.m.: This 2017 incident at the center of the federal charges spurred from a 911 hang-up call. 

3:22 p.m.: Chuck Peterson, Hoadley’s lawyer is up now. 

3:22 p.m.: Govt says after he’s told about the charges against him, he is ordered to turn in work cell and laptop. But govt says evidence will show he wiped the electronics. Video of him allegedly hitting an arrestee from 2016 was on those devices- and will never be seen. 

3:20 p.m.: Prosecutors say that Hoadley (JH) was showing other officers a video of him punching someone, so these officers kept it to themselves for four years until finally giving in and reporting it to FBI

3:19 p.m.: We will see videos, defendant’s reaction to investigation, documents, messages, etc….

3:19 p.m.: After four years, a detective with Caldwell PD said this incident ate at him… so he finally went to the FBI. 

3:18 p.m.: Hoadley allegedly showed colleagues a video of him punching a man who was handcuffed in the head. 

3:15 p.m.: Govt says Hoadley and another officer who was outside, Officer Ibarra, did not have body cams on. But another officer did. It was on during the aftermath of the alleged incident and you can see the alleged victim on the ground. We will see that video. 

3:12 p.m.: Paraphrasing from govt’s opening statements: As an officer, Hoadley took an oath to protect and serve citizens of Caldwell. Instead, he assaulted one. 

3:11 p.m.: OPENING STATEMENTS BEGINNING: this is an outline to explain what that party plans to show in trial. US Attorney for District of Idaho going first.

3:07 p.m.: Btw, the judge presiding over this case is from Wyoming. He was asked to come in as a visiting judge. 

3:00 p.m.: We are back with a 14-person jury. Stay tuned for opening statements. 

2:54 p.m.: COURT BACK IN SESSION; Jusdge is gathering jury. The opening statements will begin, starting with prosecution.

1:22 p.m.: Going to lunch. Will recovene at 2:50 p.m. 

1:19 p.m.: Judge advises jury not to speak with anyone about this case, research or watch/read media about this case. That allows case to only be decided on lawful evidence presented in court. Mistrial could result if rules are broken.

1:12 p.m.: Timeline for trial today: Jury receiving instructions, then recess, then opening statements, then presentation of evidence.

1:10 p.m.: Judge says he overestimated on the number of jurors he'd need and is thanking the ones he's dismissing for their time.

12:20 p.m.: All jurors are asked about exposure to this story in the news media.

12:13 p.m.: Judge just dismissed one juror because she said she believed people were guilty until proven innocent, not the other way around.

11:37 p.m.: Because the alleged victim was trafficking in marijuana, attorney is asking jurors whether they think marijuana should be legalized in Idaho.

11:33 a.m.: A potential juror just said she would probably believe a police officer over a testifying witness/civilian because "they're breaking the law," "because he's the law," "he picked someone up who was doing something illegal."

11:05 a.m.: A juror just said she had the defendant as a student and was a friend of her child.

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