Appeals From Dothan Municipal To Houston County Circuit Court - Criminal Jury Trials In Henry CountyRickey Stokes
Posted by: RStokes
Date: Aug 13 2012 10:26 PM
DOTHAN: Today marked day one of the appeals from Dothan Municipal Court to Houston County Circuit Court. Henry County District Court Judge Derek Peterson is appointed a special Circuit Judge in Houston County to hear the appeals from Dothan to Houston County.
While the District Attorney of the Twentieth Judicial Circuit, Doug Valeska, gets, money off each and every case made by Dothan Police Department, all appeal cases are tried in Houston County Circuit Court by Dothan Assistant City Attorney’s Kevin Kelly and Joe Herring.
On the docket were 37 cases involving 27 defendants. The cases range from one being filed on August 3, 2001 for Domestic Violence which is a failure to pay review, to a DUI filed on December 23, 2009, a DUI filed on March 23, 2009, a Carrying a Pistol Without A Permit filed on April 28, 2009, a Disorderly Conduct filed on April 28, 2009.
Two cases were continued because the City of Dothan had failed to provide video production. One case was a DUI filed on June 4, 2009 and an Open Container case filed June 4, 2009.
A DUI case filed on September 3, 2009, an Assault 3rd and Resisting Arrest case filed on September 3, 2009. These cases will have oral arguments on Tuesday morning where the defense will ask the Judge to dismiss the cases. Since the arrest in 2008 Dothan Prosecutors have disobeyed orders of Dothan Municipal Court and Houston County Circuit Court to turn evidence of videos over to the defense. In January the court ordered the Dothan Prosecutors to turn over the evidence and to date they have failed to do so. This case has been on-going for over 1300 days since the arrest. The defendant, John Turner, has tried all he can do to get this case into court but the City of Dothan has stone walled and blocked it from going to trial. Turner has a federal lawsuit against Dothan which is stayed pending the outcome of this case.
Of the 37 cases pending on the appeal docket, 17 of the 37 cases are from the year 2009.
Today Judge Peterson dismissed one case because the prosecution witness was a former Dothan Police Officer on private duty in Iraq. The offense was “Fail To Obey Police”. Several cases today were dismissed for Dothan’s Pre-Trial Diversion Program.
Court will resume at 8:30 AM on the third floor of Houston County Courthouse.
In Henry County, with only one main courtroom, Presiding Circuit Judge Butch Binford is holding a week of criminal jury trials.
Other Judges in the courthouse are busy working. Judge Mendheim held some criminal cases, other Judges held domestic cases, Judge Lewis held first appearances and criminal matters.
And it all starts again in the morning.