Attorney files appeal after judge denies motion for change of venue due to Confederate monument outside of E Feliciana courthouse

Judge denies change of venue motion in East Feliciana
Confederate monument change of venue; motion to dismiss charges

CLINTON, LA (WAFB) - An East Feliciana Judge ruled against a defendant’s change of venue request due to a Confederate monument located outside of the courthouse.

Ronnie Anderson was charged with illegal possession of a stolen firearm and filed to change the venue of his trial, which is set for Feb. 4.

This motion was a revision on an earlier change of venue request the District Attorney called "ridiculous and embarassing."

This is far from the first time these attorneys have disagreed over the case. Defense Attorney Niles Haymer filed a motion to quash, or dismiss, the charges against his client in September of 2018, citing what he calls flawed reports from the Wilson Police Department.

(Source: Thomas, Rachael)
(Source: Thomas, Rachael)

Haymer says there are glaring grammatical errors, missing information, and says above all, they weren’t notarized. He argues that based on these reports, the case should be thrown out and the possession of a stolen firearm charges dropped against his client, but DA Sam D’Aquilla says, “not so fast.”

“You cannot put somebody’s life in the balance based on such a badly written report. I think you should go to that officer and send that officer to training and I think you should dismiss this case against Ronnie Anderson,” said Haymer.

“A police report by itself is not going to negate the fact that a crime occurred. If a crime occurred in East Feliciana Parish, then we’re going to do everything we can to prosecute it," said D’Aquilla.

Haymer also filed a change of venue motion back in July, saying the Confederate monument outside the courthouse there would make it impossible for his client to get a fair shake in court. The DA then called those claims “ridiculous and embarrassing.” That motion was also denied.

The fight is now headed to the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals.

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