Motion for Dismissal Denied in Gardner Case

At a hearing in the Arlington Circuit Court Tuesday on a motion by Peter Greenspun, the attorney representing Falls Church resident Michael Gardner, to dismiss the charges against his client, Judge Joan Alper denied the motion and sealed its lengthy contents. Gardner is charged with three felony counts of aggravated sexual assault against three girls aged 10-11 in incidents that allegedly took place in his home last June.

Due to the need to investigate potentially exculpatory evidence presented in the motion to dismiss, the date for Gardner’s trial was rescheduled from mid-January to the week of April 23, 2012. However, Judge Alper provided Gardner with more lenient terms of his bail. Greenspun pointed out to the judge Tuesday that parents of two of the alleged victims had been unwilling to comply with a Nov. 3 court order to provide key information until last weekend, when they learned of Tuesday’s hearing. Prosecuting Commonwealth Attorney Nicole Wittman, from Loudoun County, acknowledged in court that DNA test results indicated that semen found on the clothing of one of the alleged victims was not Gardner’s.

It is expected that DNA tests being conducted by the state on the identification of the person(s) associated with semen in question will be announced within a month.