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Three murder cases on grand jury agenda

By By Suzanne Monk/The Meridian Star
July 23, 2001
A grand jury convening today at the Lauderdale County Courthouse will consider indictments in 294 cases including three cases of people charged with murder.
District Attorney Bilbo Mitchell said the number is about average for the current schedule, which includes three grand jury sessions a year. The panel is expected to meet through Friday.
Mitchell's remarks come shortly after former District Attorney Joe Clay Hamilton criticized the grand jury system for not allowing jurors adequate time to consider their decisions. Hamilton estimated the time spent on each Lauderdale County case at three minutes.
Mitchell said the timing is up to the jurors.
The panel is expected to consider cases until Friday, and then inspect county-owned facilities.
Suzanne Monk is managing editor of The Meridian Star. Call her at 693-1551, ext. 3229, or e-mail her at smonk@themeridianstar.com.
Lauderdale County District Attorney Bilbo Mitchell said the type and number of cases to be presented to this week's grand jury include:
Drug charges, 86
Felony bad check, 69
Burglary, 27
Felony DUI, 20
Uttering/forgery, 13
Grand larceny, 11
Felony shoplifting, 9
Rape, 9
False pretense, 7
Embezzlement, 6
Sexual battery, 5
Aggravated assault, 5
Fondling, 4
Murder, 3
Armed robbery, 3
Aggravated assault on a police officer, 3
Receiving stolen property, 2
Intimidating a witness, 2
Robbery, 2
One case each of manslaughter, credit card fraud, arson, felon in possession of a firearm, domestic violence, motor vehicle theft, possession of a weapon on school property and kidnapping.