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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Lafayette County Circuit Court

FBI agent sues authors of Scruggs’ book

An FBI agent in Oxford claims a former federal prosecutor and a political blogger made false statements against him in a book they wrote about the judicial bribery scandal involving former trial attorney Richard “Dickie” Scruggs.

Oxford attorney Christi McCoy filed the suit on Dec. 2 in Lafayette County Circuit Court on behalf of her client, Philip Halbert “Hal” Neilson.

The suit names authors Tom Dawson and Alan Lange and the publishing company, The Pediment Group, and claims in the book, “King of Torts,” Dawson, a retired U.S. assistant attorney, lied and made slanderous statements about Neilson in his book in retaliation for Neilson filing an official complaint against Dawson in 2001. (December 10, 2010, Page 2A)

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    Polls open at 7 a.m.

    Midterm elections generally don’t bring high percentages of voters out to the polls.

    “Typically in the past it’s been fairly low,” said Lafayette County Circuit Clerk Mary Alice Busby.

    But this year, Busby expects the turnout to be higher.“We’re had a much large amount of absentee voters for this election,” she said.

    All 18 voter precincts will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday. The deadline to register to vote has passed and Busby said there are no last minute registrations.

    There are 24,235 people registered to vote in Lafayette County. (November 1, 2010, Page 1A)

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      County appeals drug court debacle

      The Lafayette County Board of Supervisors instructed county attorney David O’Donnell to file an appeal with the Mississippi Supreme Court against a final order given by a Circuit Court judge instructing them to not interfere with the operation of the county’s Drug Court.

      The one-page appeal, filed Tuesday, says the supervisors are appealing the entire Final Order filed Sept. 21 by Circuit Court Judge Andrew Howorth but doesn’t list any specific parts of the order. The appeal was filed after the board voted 3 to 2 granting O’Donnell permission to file the appeal during an executive session earlier this month. Supervisors Robert Blackmon and Mike Pickens were the dissenting votes.

      Howorth, who started Drug Court three years ago, filed a “cease and desist” in June against the supervisors from interfering with the operations of the Drug Court and the Circuit Court in general. Howorth claims the supervisors have continually interfered with the operations of the Circuit Court, almost from the day the current board took office in 2008. He also ordered the supervisors to comply with all reasonable requests made by and on behalf of the Drug Court pertaining to Drug Court funds administered by Lafayette County. (October 21, 2010, Page 1)

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        Stiffer charges sought for drug dealers

        Lafayette County Metro Narcotics Unit’s Keith Davis, and the other investigators at Metro, are pushing adding “enhancement charges” to regular drug dealing charges. Enhancement charges include, selling drugs within 1,500 of a school or church or child endangerment, for selling drugs when a child is present.

        An enhancement charge does just that — it enhances the sentence of the defendant if found guilty. Under state law, selling drugs within 1,500 feet of a church or school allows a judge to double the penalty.

        Several suspects charged with dealing drugs were indicted during the September grand jury and have been given enhancement charges along with being indicted with selling drugs.

        See these and other indictments handed down by the grand jury in today’s EAGLE. (October 20, 2010, Page 1)

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          Registration for November election ends Saturday

          The last day to register to vote in the upcoming general election on Nov. 2 is this Saturday.

          The Lafayette County Circuit Clerk’s Office will be open from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday to accommodate last-minute voter registrations.

          Those wishing to vote absentee must have their ballots mailed in enough time for them to be at the Circuit Clerk’s Office by Nov. 1. The office will be open 8 a.m. to noon on Oct. 23 and Oct. 30 to allow voters to come in and vote absentee. (September 29, 2010, Page 1)

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            Foster parent guilty of abusing foster child

            A Lafayette County jury took four hours to deliver a guilty verdict against a former Oxford man, charged with molesting his 16-year-old foster child.

            David Campbell, 46, was originally charged with fondling by a person in a position of trust or authority and sexual battery by a person in a position of trust or authority. The jury acquitted Campbell on the sexual battery, but found him guilty on the fondling charge. (September 28, 2010, Page 1)

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              Officials try again to remove pesky voting printers

              After being shot down two years ago, officials from the Circuit Clerk’s Office and the Election Commission will try again to get the troublesome printers removed from the back of touch-screen electronic voting machines during Tuesday’s meeting of the Lafayette County Board of Supervisors. (September 3, 2010, Page 1A)

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                Headlighting appeal wins

                A man found guilty of headlighting deer won an appeal in the Lafayette County Circuit Court during the April court term. See his story and the entire court term results. (May 12, 2010, Page 1)

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                  Former restaurant owner opts for drug court over prison

                  The former owner of the restaurant 208 arrested for possession of drugs last year has chosen drug court over jail time. (March 25, 2010, Page 2)

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                    Three more qualify for regional judge race

                    The race for Third District Circuit Court is heating up with three more attorneys qualifying for the November election: John A. Gregory, Dave Rozier and Kent A. Smith. Local voters will decide who will get a judicial seat in the Third District Circuit Court, which covers seven counties — Lafayette, Benton, Calhoun, Chickasaw, Marshall, Tippah and Union. Currently there are three seats for the Third Circuit. (March 4, 2010, Page 1)

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