Rankin County men wanted for skipping court - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Suspected sex offender added to Rankin Co. most wanted

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Guest says if you know where Gwaltney and Guichet are, you're urged to contact your local law enforcement or Crime Stoppers. Guest says if you know where Gwaltney and Guichet are, you're urged to contact your local law enforcement or Crime Stoppers.
BRANDON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Thousands of cases are held in Rankin County court each year. District Attorney Michael Guest says most people show up for their trial, but there is a small percentage who do not.

"I would say in the range of 90-95% of those individuals who are released on bond do return to either stand trial or ultimately plead guilty to their offenses," Guest said.

John Gwaltney failed to appear in court last week after being indicted for gratification of lust and sexual battery involving a 9-year-old girl. Court records say the crime allegedly occurred in July 2011.

In an unrelated case, Guest says Rankin County attorney Louis Guichet III skipped court for two drug charges. He was indicted on a possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute charge and a possession of methamphetamine charge.

Arrest warrants have been issued for the men, and the two are now on the district attorney's most wanted list.

"We want to make sure that we expedite the cases through the system as quickly as possible. We want to do that for the purpose of our victims and our victim's family, feeling like they are being well served by the criminal justice system. Generally, the older the cases get the more difficult they become for prosecutors to prove," Guest said.

He later went on to explain the guidelines are used to create the District Attorney's Most Wanted list. 

"We, one, want to make sure that we think there are ties here to this community, specifically the metro Jackson area. We look at the nature of the offense. We take things into consideration such as criminal history," Guest said.

Guest says when someone fails to show up for court, a number of law enforcement agencies become involved including the U.S. Marshals and its fugitive task force in Jackson.

"There are members from the sheriff's department assigned to that task force and so as we're working with the sheriff's department to develop that list, we're also working with those task force members and they have jurisdiction nation wide," Guest said.

Guest says if you know where Gwaltney and Guichet are, you're urged to contact your local law enforcement or Crime Stoppers.

For a list of the most wanted fugitives, visit the district attorney's website.

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