Diego Rodriguez, one of the defendants in the lawsuit involving St. Luke’s hospital and Ammon Bundy, has filed a Notice of Removal to Federal Court in the case.
Rodriguez is the grandfather of Baby Cyrus, the child at the center of a controversy involving the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, the Meridian Police Department, Child Protective Services, and St. Luke’s hospital. The incident with Baby Cyrus began in March 2022. You can read press releases and Idaho Dispatch articles on the incident here, here, here, here, and here.
Rodriguez had previously filed a joint petition with Bundy to move the case to Federal Court, which was denied. The case was remanded back to State Court. Rodriguez argues that Federal Judge David Nye violated his due process rights in ignoring the arguments made, and also argues that Nye is mistaken in his interpretation of Federal Court jurisdiction as it pertains to questions of parties to the lawsuit residing in separate US states.
In the Notice dated May 22, Rodriguez argues that jurisdiction and venue are proper in Federal Court for the following reasons,
“I, Diego Rodriguez, initially filed to join Ammon Bundy’s petition (another defendant on this case) but had my petition completely overlooked, ignored, and considered “moot.” The arguments I made have therefore not been considered by this court and I am asking for proper due process under the law; to have my arguments heard and properly responded to. The U.S. Constitution guarantees me my right to due process of law both under the 5th and the 14th Amendment.
Also, I am being persecuted for having exercised my right of free speech, which is guaranteed by the 1st amendment in the U.S. Constitution—an issue which likewise brings this matter into Federal jurisdiction.Advertisement
I, Diego Rodriguez, am not a citizen of the state of Idaho, nor was I a citizen of the state of Idaho when this case was originally filed in May of 2022. The United States Constitution is extremely clear on the jurisdiction of the Federal judiciary in such cases.”
Rodriguez’s statement on Judge Nye’s residency interpretation reads, in part:
“In Judge David Nye’s written respond to Ammon Bundy’s petition to move this case to the federal court, Judge Nye stated, “Complete diversity exists if none of the plaintiffs is a citizen of the same state as any of the defendants” and he used this spurious and specious interpretation to reject Ammon’s argument. However, this is a wholly untrue interpretation. First of all, nowhere does the US Constitution nor US Code require “complete diversity” where “none of the plaintiffs is a citizen of the same state as any of the defendants.” That fact alone should stand on its own as demonstrating that the interpretation of “total diversity” is a total interpolation of thoughts and words, and is not part of any written law—especially not the US Constitution. Furthermore, the case laws quoted by Judge Nye is in no way representative or similar to the case at hand as Ammon and I are individual citizens and not corporations or companies. Such an interpretation would mean that if someone from Idaho decided to sue 50 people, 1 from each of the 50 states, then so long as one of those defendants was from Idaho, then the case would still be handled in an Idaho Court room, with Idaho judges, an Idaho jury, Idaho news media, Idaho social pressures, and Idaho control—guaranteeing a totally biased and unfair outcome for all of the defendants but especially the 49 who did not live in Idaho. That is not what the law says and that was not the intent of the framers of the Constitution.”Advertisement
You can see the Notice of Removal to Federal Court in its entirety here:Diego Notice to Remove to Federal Court
Simultaneously happening in this case was a hearing in the courtroom of State District Court Judge Lynn Norton on Tuesday. At the hearing, Judge Norton issued a warrant for the arrest of Rodriguez. The warrant is based on arguments by the counsel for St. Luke’s hospital who claim Rodriguez is guilty of contempt of court for continuing to speak publicly about the case. Rodriguez has conducted virtual townhalls and written extensively about the case on the FreedomMan.org website, which is also named in the lawsuit.
On Tuesday Rodriguez told the Idaho Dispatch,
“Ada County has proven itself to be one of the most vile, wicked, and corrupt counties in America. It is where justice goes to die. From corrupt cops to criminal Judges who violate the Constitution and break countless laws without consequence, it should be expected that Judge Lynn Norton—who has an axe to grind with me for exposing her criminal behavior on my website—would issue another unlawful order against me, but this time for my arrest in A CIVIL LAWSUIT, no less. She’s issued multiple unlawful orders against me on this lawsuit, and this is just another. Imagine that, these criminal animals want to throw me in jail for exposing their wickedness on my website. What is it they’re so worried about people reading? What truth to they not want people to see? And why do they continually violate my 1st Amendment rights? I have a right to expose their criminal behavior and I will continue to exercise that Constitutional right regardless of what a corrupt judge tries to do to me.” -Diego Rodriguez
David with the Idaho Dispatch was in the courtroom on Tuesday. Following the hearing, he asked for a comment from Erik Stidham, lead counsel for Holland and Hart, representing St. Luke’s hospital. Stidham was not willing to address the arrest warrant issued for Rodriguez. He replied only by saying he would refer us to his previous statement, which was in reference to Bundy:
“Come to court. Show up. Stop putting on a cowboy hat and sitting on the couch!”
Stidham was also offered the chance to address the public on a livestream through the Idaho Dispatch Facebook page. He declined.
Tags: Ada County, Ammon Bundy, Baby Cyrus, Child Protective Services, CPS, Diego Rodriguez, Erik Stidham, Federal Court, Fourth District Court, Holland and Hart, Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, Judge David Nye, Judge Lynn Norton, Save Baby Cyrus, St. Luke's Hospital, State Court