Houston County Jury Rules In Murder Case NOT GUILTYRickey Stokes
Posted by: RStokes
Date: Aug 07 2019 10:30 PM
HOUSTON COUNTY: Today a jury of 12 peers agreed with Attorney Matt Lamere in his presentation of the facts in the shooting death Andrew Forehand.
The case started on Monday where Houston County Sheriff Department charged 28 year Matthew Preston Forehand with the shooting death of his brother, Andrew.
Defense Atttorney Matthew ( Matt ) Lamere argued throughout the case the shooting death was done out of self defense.
The location of the shooting was on Cottonwood Road in the Forehand's grandmother's residence. The Houston County Sheriff Department's allegations was the death was a Capital Murder case. That Matthew Preston Forehand was not suppose to be at the grandparent's residence. The allegations therefore was the shooting death occurred during the commission of a burglary.
The Houston County Sheriff Department had been to the residence earlier the day of the shooting on a complaint from Andrew Forehand with allegations against his brother, Matthew Preston Forehand, for criminal mischief. Andrew claimed his brother damaged his vehicle.
But no witnesses could back up Andrew's allegations.
The Houston County Sheriff Department ( State of Alabama ) claimed that Matthew Preston Forehand went to his grandparents residence with a rifle with a plan to kill Andrew Forehand.
Attorney Matt Lamere called the hand on those allegations. All calls to 911 are recorded. Attorney Matt Lamere said you can hear CLEARLY on the 911 call where Matthew Preston Forehand said his brother was going to harm him or kill him. All through the trial Matt Lamere proved the death was the result of an act of self defense.
The jury started deliberation on Tuesday afternoon. A unanimous verdict of NOT GUILTY was returned returned today verifying the defense position this shooting death was an act of self defense.
Matthew Preston Forehand was placed under arrest for Capital Murder because of the belief the shooting death occurred during the commission of another felony offense, a burglary.
Capital Murder cases normally carry no bond. They are death penalty cases.
Matthew Preston Forehand appeared before the Honorable Benjamin Lewis, District Court Judge on July 6, 2018. In death penalty cases, when a person qualifies for a court appointed attorney, and Forehand did, a judge is required to appoint two defense attorneys. Not sure if both - but sure at least one of the two is required to have been a practicing attorney for at least 10 years.
The Honorable Judge Benjamin Lewis appointed Matthew Lamere and Raynor Clifton to represent Matthew Preston Forehand. The attorneys filed for a preliminary hearing.
A preliminary hearing is not required to follow the rules of evidence. In fact hearsay testimony is allowed.
A preliminary hearing was ordered by Judge Lewis to be held on August 3, 2018. Following the preliminary hearing Judge Lewis took the case under advisement.
Based on the evidence presented in the preliminary hearing, Judge Lewis issued an order on August 6, 2018 that the facts presented did not reach the level of Capital Murder, but probable cause was established that warranted a possible Murder charge. So the Capital Murder case was reduced to Murder and a bond of $ 75,000.00 was set.
On August 6, 2018 Matthew Preston Forehand was released on bond in the amount of $ 75,000.00. The bond was made by A - Advantage Bonding.
On November 28, 2018 a Houston County Grand Jury returned an indictment against Matthew Preston Forehand for Murder. Because the case was no longer a Capital Murder case it was no longer required for the courts to have two court appointed attorney's. Attorney Raynor Clifton was allowed to withdraw and Attorney Matthew ( Matt ) Lamere continued with the case.
The case was heard before 20th Judicial Court Circuit Judge Butch Binford this week. And the verdict of Not Guilty was returned this morning.
Matt Lamere is a private practicing attorney in Dothan. A very good attorney. He also serves as public defender in cases that require a court appointed attorney and the cases are assigned to 20th Judicial Circuit Court Judge Butch Binford.