COLBERT COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) — A Colbert County Judge has rejected a request for a hearing from a man indicted for capital murder.
According to court records, Colbert County Judge Jacqueline Hatcher has rejected a request from Brian Lansing Martin’s attorney for a hearing on a motion asking District Attorney Bryce Graham Jr. to recuse himself from the case. The defense also asked the court to unseal the recusal motion.
The motion for a hearing was filed last week and rejected a few days later. The judge’s order did not address the issue of unsealing the original motion either way beyond saying the motion was denied.
News 19 reached out to Martin’s attorney last week to ask why the defense was requesting Graham recuse himself, but has not received a response.
Martin is charged with capital murder in connection with the deaths of William Mealback, Jr. in Muscle Shoals and Sheffield Police Sergeant Nick Risner on October 1, 2021.
Authorities said on that day, over a year ago, that Martin shot and killed Mealback while the two were in Mealback’s truck on Avalon Avenue in Muscle Shoals. He then pushed Mealback out of the truck and led police on a chase to nearby Sheffield.
Police said Martin was stopped behind the old Southgate Mall and a shootout began with law enforcement. During that altercation, Martin is accused of shooting and killing Risner and injuring Sheffield Police Lieutenant Max Dotson.
Martin has pleaded not guilty to those charges citing a mental disease or defect.