A jury of seven whites and five blacks deliberated a day and a half before delivering the verdict Thursday afternoon. Dixon was the first Memphis defendant to go to trial in Operation Tennessee Waltz. Jurors listened to five days of testimony including several hours of secretly recorded video and audio tapes.
Speaking to reporters outside the federal building afterwards, Dixon and his attorney, Coleman Garrett reiterated the entrapment defense which jurors rejected.
Dixon will be sentenced later. He praised Garrett and said he was glad he decided to testify. He encouraged other defendants in Tennessee Waltz to go to trial so people can see how the government acted." He said the government is trying to steamroller a generation of black leadership in Memphis.
Garrett also encouraged other defendants to fight.
I believe in the final analysis if everyone will stand up on their hind legs and fight back, this thing can still be turned around, he said.
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Present for the evening along with Ford will be the films main producer, Tia Yoka McMillan. The two will answer questions after each showing, said publicist Patricia Rogers. First question: Why so much for a ticket? Next question: Is this a fund-raiser for Fords campaign? Rogers has already answered that one with no, though she said that, if all goes well, a sequel is in the works, entitled Mr. Ford Goes to Washington. She swears she isnt kidding.
Speaking of flipping scripts, the plot of the film has to do with several college friends gathering at a friends funeral and reprising their relationships. Hmmmm. That sounds familiar.