Countywide : Henley Juror Pleads Not Guilty to Contempt
A dismissed juror in the cocaine trafficking trial of former Rams cornerback Darryl Henley pleaded not guilty Monday to contempt of court charges and allegations that he gave false information to FBI agents.
The juror, Michael D. Malachowski of San Bernardino, entered the plea to the five-count indictment during a brief arraignment hearing before U.S. Magistrate Judge Elgin Edwards.
The indictment against Malachowski differs from a complaint filed last month by the FBI accusing Malachowski of two counts of jury tampering and obstruction of justice.
The latest indictment accuses Malachowski of violating a federal judge’s order by contacting a sitting juror in the Henley case on two occasions. It also alleges that the San Bernardino man lied to FBI agents who investigated allegations of jury tampering in the case.
Malachowski was a juror for three weeks before being dismissed from the trial of Henley and four other men who eventually were convicted in March of running a cocaine-trafficking ring that stretched from Orange County to the East Coast.
Henley and the others, who have since filed a motion for a new trial, contend that another juror, Bryan Quihuis, told Malachowski that he would be willing to vote for the defendants’ acquittals in exchange for a $50,000 bribe.
Quihuis has denied the allegations.
If convicted, Malachowski faces up to 16 years in prison.
But his attorney, John W. Barton of Newport Beach, said his client adamantly denies the charges and plans to fight them in court.