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LIMESTONE COUNTY, Ala. – Saturday morning, Judge Pride Tompkins filed a court order continuing the trial of Limestone County Sheriff Mike Blakley. According to the order, Tompkins made the call because of COVID-19.

This is the second time Blakely’s trial has been postponed. The sheriff was initially set to go to trial in March of 2020.

His case was initially rescheduled for March 29, 2021, also because of COVID-19. The new date came after prosecutors from the Alabama Attorney General’s office pointed to Blakely’s continued role as sheriff in arguing for the case to move forward.

Given how well-known Blakely is — he is currently Alabama’s longest-serving sheriff — the jury pool was set to include nearly 500 would-be-jurors.

Blakely is facing multiple theft and ethics charges, which accuse him of stealing money from his office and campaign accounts, as well as soliciting money from employees. Blakely has argued that the ethics law is unconstitutionally vague.

The trial has not been rescheduled as of January 9.