Attorney General asks court not to grant former Sheriff Mike Blakely a new trial

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ATHENS, Ala. – The Attorney General’s Office has filed a motion asking the court to reject former Limestone County Sheriff Mike Blakely’s request for a new trial. They argue Blakely’s request is short on facts and the law.

The state filed its opposition to Blakely’s request for a new trial on Tuesday, arguing the former sheriff’s trial had been fair, impartial and the weight of the evidence proved that he was guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

The filing by the state can be read in its entirety here.

The motion cited and sought to rebut all of the claims Blakely’s lawyers offered in their motion including:

  • Closing the courtroom for a day and a half to the public and media during jury selection.
    • The state’s motion said the defense didn’t object to this arrangement at the start of the trial;
  • Failing to dismiss a theft count he was convicted of, because his attorneys said, it was a campaign act violation but was treated as a standard theft count.
    • Blakely’s argument of “I can’t steal from my own campaign” was denied during his trial, and that two motions for acquittal and the argument for a new trial does not offer any new reasoning or case law;
  • Failing to grant a mistrial after the defense alleged prosecutors from the Alabama Attorney General’s office failed to disclose to the defense that a state witness, Trent Willis, was under investigation by the Attorney General’s office for stealing from another candidate’s campaign.
    • Blakely knew about the Attorney General’s investigation into Willis as early as February 2020 and that the former sheriff did not learn about it during the trial;

The court has not yet made a decision to hold a hearing and allow oral arguments.

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