Trial delayed as prosecution requests new Judge -, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Trial delayed as prosecution requests new Judge

June 8, 2006

Leesburg -- Prosecutors want a new judge in the trial of two brothers accused of roughing up a police officer. The judge refused to recuse himself. Now the Georgia Court of Appeals will decide what to do.

 Shane and Dakota Parsons were supposed to go on trial in Leesburg for felony obstruction of an officer and misdemeanor battery. Prosecutors say Judge George Peagler made comments to lawyers that indicated he'd already made up his mind about the case.

They also say another judge in the circuit could be called as a defense witness, so they want an outside judge to hear the case.

The Parsons were arrested New Year's Eve 2002 at their Smithville home for fighting officers who caught them shooting firecrackers. They claim former Smithville Police Officer David Smith was angry at Shane Parsons because a judge forced him to apologize to Parsons in court the month before.

The Parsons say Smith put out a distress call at their home claiming he was in danger, and several law enforcement agencies swarmed in and beat and pepper sprayed their family. Smith was later fired by Smithville Police. 

Judge Peagler ordered prosecutors to produce all video tapes of the arrest.