Lee County prosecutor DUI case stuck in legal limbo


Daily Journal

TUPELO – Lee County Prosecuting Attorney James D. Moore was arrested earlier this month, charged with driving under the influence and spent the night in the Lee County Jail.

Moore, 44, of Saltillo, was booked into the jail by Tupelo Police at 1:03 a.m. on Dec. 3. He was released at 8:30 a.m. after posting a $1,900 bond through M&W Bonding.

“As prosecutor, I owe the people of Lee County a duty to work hard on their behalf and to be honest, and I can assure you all that you always have and always will get my best efforts on both counts,” said Moore. “I was charged with DUI two weeks ago and that is still a pending case in Tupelo City Court.”

Moore said he was meeting with a group of people and drinking on the evening of Tuesday, Dec. 2. As he tried to leave downtown Tupelo and head to his home, he hit a parked car and was arrested.

“I was out with some folks at JP’s Downtown,” said Moore. “When I left, I swiped the side of a parked car. There was some damage to it. I have spoken with the lady who owns the car and the repairs are being handled through my insurance.”

Under Mississippi law, a first offense DUI carries penalties of a 90-day license suspension, fines of $250-$1,000 and up to 48 hours in jail.

When the case does come up, Moore will find himself on a different side of the courtroom. Instead of the prosecutor, he will be the defendant. Moore normally works in Lee County Justice Court. His case will be handled in Tupelo Municipal Court.

He has retained Tupelo attorney Harry Sumner to represent him in the case, that will most likely be heard after the first of the year.

“It will work its way through the system like any other case,” said Moore. “I don’t know how long it will take.

“As far as fighting it, I will probably defer to Mr. Sumner. It’s nice to have someone to advise me what to do. I will listen to his advice.”

Moore’s term as county attorney is up next year. In November of 2011, Moore, a Democrat, defeated independent challenger Brian Neely 12,972 votes to 8,844 in the general election.


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