Monday, March 20, 2017

Charges Dropped Against DA Weirich

Posted By on Mon, Mar 20, 2017 at 3:38 PM

click to enlarge Amy Weirich and members of her staff during a news conference Monday. - TOBY SELLS
  • Toby Sells
  • Amy Weirich and members of her staff during a news conference Monday.

Shelby County District Attorney General Amy Werich has taken a private reprimand for her conduct in the murder trial of Noura Jackson and will not face a Supreme Court hearing panel on the matter later this week.

In 2016, the Tennessee Board of Professional Responsibility recommended a public censure for Weirich as she was "guilty of acts and omissions" in standards of practicing law during the Jackson case.

The board said Weirich violated Jackson’s constitutional rights with an outburst during her closing arguments. Also, the board said Weirich failed to hand over crucial evidence to Jackson’s defense attorneys.

A hearing by the board was scheduled to begin here Thursday.

“To save my office and my family the distraction of a long drawn out hearing, my attorney Jef Fiebelman asked the board to issue a private reprimand, which admits an attorney error has occurred but, as the American Bar Association says, it does not unnecessarily stigmatize a lawyer from whom the public needs no protection,” Weirich said.

The board decided to move forward with the hearing. But, on Monday, the board issued a notice of “voluntary dismissal” of the case against Weirich.

She said she had “no idea” why the board decided to drop the case. Weirich said she’ll get an official letter in the mail from the board noting her private reprimand and that will be all. The dismissal includes all charges against her, she said, “we’re getting rid of it all.”

Weirich said her office handles over 200,000 cases a year and, “no doubt errors will be made.”

“It is, indeed, a testament to the integrity and professionalism of my office that we avoid trial errors at all cost," she said. "We appreciate the panel’s acknowledgement of the difference between mistakes of the mind and mistakes of the heart.”

While she said she is grateful to have the matter behind her, she said it is “still sad and tragic.”

“On June 5, 2005, Jennifer Jackson was brutally stabbed and murdered at the hands of her daughter (Noura Jackson),” Weirich said. “Hopefully, today’s resolution will give peace to her and her friends who loved her so deeply.”

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