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By Terrence McCoy
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"Are you entitled to that if he has not invoked discovery?" Judge Pando asked.
"I am, Judge," Lackey responded.
Pando didn't agree that day. "I think that you are not entitled to discovery if he has not invoked, and if I am wrong you show me."
Lackey apparently couldn't show her. Five months and roughly fourteen hearings later the judge had had enough. On May 15, she called the trial. "She asked me if I was ready for trial," Jones recounts. "I said, 'Yes, your honor.'" Then she asked Lackey, who requested another continuance because he didn't want to get ambushed by the videotape. No more continuances, the judge declared, call your first witness. Jones says that was supposed to be Officer Reynolds. She wasn't present. The prosecutor was forced to dismiss the case. Jones walked out of the Briar Patch a free man.
SAO spokesman Ed Griffith said the office couldn't comment in greater detail because they have a year to reinstate the charge against Jones. "We're mulling over whether or not to refile," Griffith says.
"Why they gonna drag a misdemeanor case on for another year?" Jones asks angrily. "They done wasted enough of my time already. I was arrested protesting on behalf of employment for local residents at a rally I had a permit for."
Jones originally agreed to show New Times the videotape. "You can see her come right up to me," he said with a giggle about Officer Reynolds. But when told that the state was still considering continuing the case, Jones demurred. "I better not -- it's my ace in the hole."