Cop's lawyer responds to manslaughter charge | Arkansas Blog

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Cop's lawyer responds to manslaughter charge

Posted By on Sat, Sep 8, 2012 at 7:53 AM

BILL JAMES: Attorney for Officer Josh Hastings said dead suspects lawbreaking precipitated events.
  • BILL JAMES: Attorney for Officer Josh Hastings said dead suspect's lawbreaking precipitated events.
Channel 4 gathered a comment last night from criminal defense lawyer Bill James, who'll be representing Little Rock Patrol Officer Joshua Hastings on the manslaughter charge filed against him yesterday for the fatal shooting of Bobby Moore, 15, at the scene of a suspected car break-in.

Hastings, 26 and a five-year police veteran, has said he fired because he feared for his life as Moore drove a car toward him when he tried to stop three youths to question them about car break-ins at an apartment complex.

"I think as a police officer he's very hurt. He's really hurt more than anything else," Bill James told KARK.

"You can't escape the fact that one person in this was violating the law when it all started — and it wasn't Officer Hastings," James said.

Moore's mother, Sylvia Perkins, had said shortly after the shooting, however: "It's a kid. It's a 15-year-old kid. I don't care what he was out there doing."

Moore's family declined to talk with Channel 4 yesterday. No civil legal action has been filed to date over the youth's death. When he died, he faced an adult charge in a carjacking. The car he was driving also was stolen, though Hastings didn't know that at the time.

James wasn't ready to accept investigators' finding that the car had stopped or was in reverse, rather than driving toward Hastings at a high speed. From Channel 4:

"There's questions about it, if the car was in reverse. I believe it was found in neutral. There's a theory of he was in reverse, but I don't think it's an absolute fact," he said. "And as far as what investigators think or what they think things seem to indicate or like like doesn't really matter. Because they're not going to be asked what do you think happened. The people who are going to be asked that are the jurors."

According to James, the affidavit also only explains the best-case scenario for the state. He won't be able to view all of the evidence until a motion for discovery is filed, and getting all the information could take upward of 60 days.

James said in this case right now, there's only one undisputed fact.

"Just like everyone else, Officer Hastings is presumed innocent until he's proved otherwise," James said.

Channel 4 also asked James about Hastings' work record, which includes multiple suspensions and critical comments from supervisors about his judgment and, at times, honesty.

KARK asked James if Hastings' history would impact jurors in considering Hastings' reaction in this case.

" Well, it shouldn't. The reality is as a police officer those things happen. That's why they have them. You make mistakes, you do things you're not supposed to do, and you take those punishments that are consistent with what the level of wrongdoing was," James said. "It shouldn't be relevant in the trial. I can't imagine that's it's relevant. If it is, I think the jury will see it for what it is, a non-issue."

Tags: , , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store


Comments (12)

Showing 1-12 of 12

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-12 of 12

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Governor will call special session on pharmacy dispute

    Gov. Asa Hutchinson said this afternoon he backed putting pharmacy reimbursement managers under Insurance Department regulation to address pharmacists' complaints about money-losing reimbursements for prescriptions filled under the Medicaid expansion health coverage provided by private insurers.
    • Feb 19, 2018
  • George Washington's open line

    The open line and daily news report.
    • Feb 19, 2018
  • Friends of the Arkansas State Archives rally support

    The Friends of the Arkansas State Archives has produced this measured video plea of support for the agency, roiled recently by the resignation of long-time archivist Dr. Lisa Speer who found, as others have, it difficult to work for Heritage Department Director Stacy Hurst. Hurst's agency took over supervision of the archives after Asa Hutchinson took office.
    • Feb 19, 2018
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • 'Million-Dollar Thursday': A visit to Sherwood's hot check court

    We take a visit to the weekly hot check court in Sherwood District Court, the subject of a recent civil rights lawsuit filed by ACLU Arkansas and others, who say the system there results in a modern-day debtor's prison
    • Aug 25, 2016
  • Latest Obamacare repeal bill would hit Arkansas treasury hard

    The latest effort to undo Obamacare, the Graham-Cassidy legislation, would shift federal support for health coverage to a block grant system to the states. Bad news for Arkansas.
    • Sep 18, 2017
  • Satanic Temple: Make Rapert pay for Ten Commandments monument

    A petition drive has begun to encourage a demand that Sen. Jason Rapert pay for the legal fees in defending his Ten Commandments monument proposed for the state Capitol grounds. It's more work by the Satanic Temple, which has fought church-state entanglement around the country.
    • Aug 28, 2016

Most Shared

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments


© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation