Cooper-Stokes files for new trial - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Cooper-Stokes files for new trial

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JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Earlier this month, a Hinds County jury awarded a new election for Joyce Jackson in Ward 3. Jackson had challenged the city election, against the winner, Councilwoman Larita Cooper-Stokes, claiming election workers broke the law.

Now, Cooper-Stokes is trying to stop voters from going back to the polls.

Stokes and her attorneys filed a motion in Hinds County Court asking Judge Richard McKenzie to overrule the jury's verdict, which wasn't in her favor, or grant her a new trial.

On June 12th, Judge McKenzie granted a new election to her opponent, Joyce Jackson, after jurors voted unanimously in her favor.

"The jury actually nullified the votes of the thousands of citizens of Ward 3 who came out to vote," said Cooper-Stokes. She says the plaintiff's attorneys simply didn't make their case.

"Mrs. Jackson's proof was lacking, she named no voters who allegedly were influenced improperly," said Imhotep Alkebu-lan, Cooper-Stokes attorney. 

"They said the witnesses for our side lied, well they would say that they lost, of course they're going to say that. That's what the losers always say." The new trial motion, not a surprise to Joyce Jackson's attorney John Reeves.

"You go to trial, you lose it you always file a motion for a new trial that's standard operating procedure so it's not that big a deal," said Reeves. 

Reeves is surprised, however, that the city has not set a date for the new election as ordered by the judge. Cooper-Stokes has her own interpretation of the judges ruling.

"The city council must wait till all matters in court are decided," said Cooper-Stokes.

Larita Cooper-Stokes and her attorneys have made no official decision to appeal the jury's verdict.  John Reeves says the judge's ruling stated the new trial should be held by July 12.

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