Well, I have been out of town for about the past week and otherwise disinterested in local political happenings, but yesterday was the hearing for White County JP Bud Osborn. You may remember that Osborn was arrested on Thanksgiving Day for drunken driving, a story that was originally reported here, then ripped off by the local paper, and ultimately became a statewide news story.
In a random act of journalism, the Searcy paper reported on yesterday’s hearing in today’s edition and according to the report, Osborn plead ‘not guilty’ in court.
The story also reports that Osborn is being represented by attorney Mark Derrick, a Searcy attorney and current city alderman for Ward 4. (It is interesting to see Mr. Derrick getting involved in this case, granted that he is also currently a candidate for district judge.)
Derrick told that paper that he has not had a chance to even review the police report, but Osborn “may or may not” have a defense:
At this point, I haven’t been able to obtain the case file to see what the facts are. Mr. Osborn may have a defense and he may not have a defense. I can’t say until I see the police reports and analyze the evidence against him.
I want to see what events lead to Officer [Michael] Bullock pulling him over and determining he was possibly intoxicated. Once you make the determination about the probable cause, you know yay or nay if there will be a trial or a negotiated plea.
Derrick also said that, if convicted, Osborn could face probation and jail time, adding that his driver’s license has already been suspended by the state.
The esteemed Searcy city attorney Buckaroo Gibson (that’s his full name, as I believe he prefers it) will represent the city in the case against Osborn.
There are a lot of political players involved here which gives some cause for concern. As with any case, the people of White County hope for a fair & impartial process. They deserve nothing less.
Osborn’s trial date is May 1st.