Jury Says 2nd Suspect “Not Guilty”

A one-day trial was held yesterday for 39-year-old Robert Lamont Watts of the 900-address range on Milton Road, Joanna. He was accused of Grand Larceny and Receiving Stolen Goods. The case was prosecuted by Savannah Goude of the state’s Attorney General’s Office, which was required because one of the three victims of the thefts was 8th Circuit Solicitor David Stumbo.

One of the witnesses yesterday is currently serving time for Grand Larceny under the Youthful Offender Act. Christopher Cain testified that he stole a trailer with the defendant, who he hung out with on a regular basis. He told of selling stolen merchandise to a Whitmire man Mr. Watts called “Uncle.”

When Cain was cross examined by the defense, he was asked if his testimony was given with the ulterior motive to co-operate with the state, perhaps suggesting, his cooperation would increase his chances of parole. Cain denied this.

After lunch break, a Whitmire man testified he and his family has bought items from the defendant, but said he was unaware of the fact that the goods

were stolen.

Closing arguments began just after 2:00 PM yesterday, with the prosecution telling the jury that all the testimony of the witnesses proved Watts guilty. The defense said the witness, Mr. Cain, was a liar and could not be believed and was testifying just to gain favor for parole.

The jury returned a verdict of “Not Guilty” just before 4:00 yesterday afternoon.