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Attorneys ask judge to let Unicoi Co. sheriff skip arraignment appearance

November 18th, 2011 6:20 am by Brad Hicks

Attorneys ask judge to let Unicoi Co. sheriff skip arraignment appearance

Attorneys for Unicoi County Sheriff Kent Harris filed a waiver Thursday in Unicoi County Criminal Court waiving the sheriff’s right to be personally present at his arraignment hearing scheduled for this Tuesday.

   The waiver document, signed by Harris and his legal counsel, Jim Bowman and Stacy Street, states that the waiver was filed due to Harris having a previously scheduled medical appointment on the same date.

   “Rescheduling this appointment could delay Mr. Harris’ evaluation by an additional six week,” the document states. “The accused further acknowledges that his attorney shall receive a copy of the charging instrument and reset the case for a later appearance.”

   Harris is continuing to receive treatment for injuries sustained in an August 2010 fall from the roof of the Unicoi County Jail, but the waiver does not specify if Harris’ Tuesday appointment is for this purpose.

   Bowman could not be reached Thursday for comment.

   On Oct. 14, Unicoi County grand jury returned 10 true bills charging Harris with 10 felonies, including six counts of official misconduct, and one count each of tampering with physical evidence, criminal simulation, theft over $1,000 and attempted aggravated assault.

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