A Day of Infamy | the “state” of Louisiana Justice

Ex-officer Nugent not guilty in Taser death case

By MARY FOSTER Associated Press

Published: Friday, October 29, 2010 at 3:28 p.m.
Last Modified: Friday, October 29, 2010 at 3:28 p.m.

After three hours of deliberation, a state court jury has returned a not guilty verdict in the manslaughter trial of a former Winnfield Police officer accused of applying eight Taser shocks to a handcuffed man who later died.

Friday’s verdict clears Scott Nugent in the death of Baron Pikes, who was stunned repeatedly as he lay on the ground, hands cuffed behind his back, for refusing to get up. After Pikes was inside the police car, he was again shocked when he did not get out as ordered.

It does not, however, end the case. The mother of Pikes’ 4-year-old son has filed a wrongful death lawsuit in federal court against city officials and Nugent.

All rights reserved. AP

Nugent found not guilty in Taser death trial in Winnfield

October 29, 2010

A jury today found former Winnfield Police Officer Scott Nugent not guilty of manslaughter in the death of a suspect who Nugent had Tasered repeatedly.

Closing arguments were heard this morning in the trial taking place in Winnfield.

Nugent was accused of using a Taser to cause the death of Barron “Scooter” Pikes on Jan. 17, 2008.

The jury had three options: not guilty; guilty of manslaughter; or guilty of negligent homicide. Jurors chose not guilty.

At least one juror voted guilty, based on a poll of jurors.

If convicted, Nugent could have faced up to 40 years in prison.

After the acquittal, the judge let Nugent and his family leave the courtroom 10 minutes before anyone else could leave, apparently for safety reasons. The case has caused some racial tensions in Winnfield.

Nugent, 24, is white. Pikes was black.

http://www.thetowntalk.com/article/20101029/NEWS01/101029014/Nugent-found-not-guilty-in-Taser-death-trial-in-Winnfield

11 October 2010 – Nugent-Winnfield Taser Trial – As of today 19 October, Tuesday afternoon, jury selection is continuing in the now infamous Winnfield Taser Trial.  At some point, challenges will be made to the efficacy of this judicial process.  The Judge’s failure to rule on the evidence and the venue,  gives the Prosecutor Chris Nevils, the opportunity to become a friend of justice. With Taser International’s Jerry Glass, flexing corporate muscle; the State in the form of 8th District Attorney Nevils, is turning out to be “an Uncle Earl & the Kingfish” stand in for the rights of the underprivileged.

The Louisiana State Conference of the NAACP met in nearby Monroe in mid-September and  the question was put forward, if maybe the Louisiana NAACP should seek support from the NAACP-LDF in light of Taser International pushing its weight around.  The question was left unanswered, eventhough the attorney for the federal-civil-suit was present at the time.  At the least, a strange confluence of events are occurring in Winnfield, Louisiana. A prosecutor is seeking for a “fair jury representation” in a police involved death of a suspect in rural Louisiana.

31 August 2010

The Trial for Scott Nugent has been delayed until October 11, 2010.  One must wonder however, what is the underlying reasons for such constant delays.  The District Attorney Chris Nevils has filed motions to intervene in the federal civil matter involving the deceased’s minor child.  It appears the defense has a co-counsel, who is also counsel for Taser International!

This counsel of record [for Scott Nugent & T.I. ‘s lead counsel] has filed for discovery in the civil matter.  The ramification of which could jeopardize the state’s criminal case. But as it has been said in another post,  all of it comes down to the real “enemies of the state”.

The state is suppose to represent the people.  However, all of the legal-judicial mechinations are constantly creating an aura of mistrust, in the very people who ‘seek to be treated, fairly’ in the American judicial processWhose Justice Is It, Anyway?

18June2010

Scott Nugent’s Trial will begin August 30th 2010 in Winnfield, Louisiana,   jury selection is scheduled to begin August 31st; however, a motion to suppress is scheduled to  be heard in Winn Parish District Court on June 25th 2010.

There is no assurance, because of apparent movement in the case that this trial will even come off.  Evidently, the defense is moving ahead with efforts to get a video thrown out, for which it has been stated the video has no incriminating evidence.  Defense attorneys have said they intend to “prove the taser did not cause the death of Baron Pikes.” Defense Attorney Phillip Terrel contends “a forensic report from Lafayette forensic pathologist Joel Carney finds the cause of death ‘inconclusive’. 

However, some are calling for race-based torture charges be brought against Nugent. Local citizens, say Nugent was familiar with Pikes, they attended school together.  The incident is further complicated when you factor in the MLK weekend of January 17, 2008.    In nearby Jena, supremacist groups were protesting Dr. King Day, a ‘counter-protest’ was held the same day.

There is a full scale attempt to “blow-over” the Scott Nugent Trial. Several court dates have been shifted around, with the June 14th 2010 date, moved ‘(2) two, weeks’ prior to the June 14th date, according to Winn DA Office personnel.  Another courthouse source; stated a date of  August 31st 2010 as a possible ??TRIAL!! date. What needs to happen is US-DOJ’s Special Litigation Section should be contacted about this situation.  They are already in New Orleans & a new LAWD US Atty would possible be amenable to taking a look at this situation.

Winnfield Taser Cop trial set for Feb 9, 2009

The trial of former Winnfield police officer Scott Nugent on charges of manslaughter and malfeasance in office has been set for February 9, 2010.  District Judge John R. Joyce of Monroe will preside. Winn Parish District Attorney R. Chris Nevils said jury selection is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. that day, and the trial is expected to last about a week.  Nugent was indicted in August 2008 in the January 17, 2008 death of Baron Pikes, who was “tased” multiple times while in police custody.

Trial delayed in Taser death

Associated Press – June 18, 2009 2:14 PM ET

WINNFIELD, La. (AP) – A manslaughter trial has been delayed for a former police officer accused of repeatedly jolting a handcuffed man with a Taser before he died.

Former Winnfield police officer Scott Nugent’s trial was scheduled to start July 13. A new date hasn’t been set yet.

The judge presiding over the case says attorneys are waiting for a key witness, Winn Parish Coroner Randolph Williams, to recover from an accidental gunshot wound. Williams reportedly was cleaning a gun when it slipped from his hand and discharged.

Besides manslaughter, Nugent also is charged with malfeasance in office stemming from the death of 21-year-old Baron Pikes.

Pikes was shocked nine times with a 50,000-volt Taser as he was arrested on a drug possession warrant in January 2008.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

A July trial date was set Friday in the case of a former Winnfield Police officer accused of killing a man with a taser stun-gun while the man was still in police custody.

Attorneys for both Scott Nugent, the former Winnfield officer, and the state met with Judge John R. Joyce on Friday and set a trial date of July 13.

A deadline of March 26 for all motions has been set.

Joyce was appointed by the Louisiana Supreme Court to hear the case as Judge Jacque D. Derr recused himself as he’s been “associated” with defendant Officer Scott Nugent on “several occasions.”

Nugent has been charged with manslaughter and malfeasance in office in connection with the death of Barron “Scooter” Pikes.

Nugent, whose firing from the Winnfield Police Department was upheld by the Civil Service Board, is accused of shocking Pikes nine times with a 50,000-volt Taser within 14 minutes. Those shocks were made while Pikes was handcuffed and in police custody in connection with a drug possession warrant in January 2008, officials said.

Winn Parish Coroner Dr. Randy Williams has said Pikes did not have PCP or cocaine in his system as officers alleged, and Pikes, whose cause of death was listed as cardiac arrest on the death certificate, may have already been dead before the last two Taser shocks.

Nugent’s attorney Phillip Terrell has said he is confident Nugent will be found innocent once all the evidence is presented. If convicted of both charges, Nugent faces up to 45 years in prison.

The family of Pikes filed a wrongful death lawsuit last year against not only Nugent but also the city of Winnfield, the mayor, City Council, police chief and other officers on the force, in addition to Taser International Inc. — the manufacturer of the stun gun device Nugent used.

Apr 6, 2009

Winn Parish Coroner Randolph Williams reportedly underwent surgery Saturday at a Shreveport hospital for an accidental gunshot wound.

Winnfield Police Chief Johnny Ray Carpenter said he had few details of the incident Sunday but expected to have additional information today.

Carpenter said, however, “My understanding is he went outside to sit under his gazebo in the back yard. He was going to clean (his gun).”

Williams was carrying a 9 mm semi-automatic pistol in his hand when it “slipped,” he said.

The hammer on the pistol was pulled back and it apparently discharged when it was dropped, Carpenter said.

The bullet went through Williams’ arm and entered his side, he said.

Williams was airlifted to a hospital in Shreveport, but Carpenter said he did not know which hospital.

Calls by The Town Talk to Williams’ home in Winnfield were unanswered.

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