D.A.'s effort to get rid of two constables may take longer than - FOX10 News | WALA

D.A.'s effort to get rid of two constables may take longer than expected

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MOBILE, AL (WALA) - The Mobile County District Attorney's efforts to get rid of two constables may take longer than expected.

It's the latest development in a fox ten news investigation we started back in August.

One of the constables is a convicted felon, the other is charged with murder. The District Attorney launched the legal process to remove the constables from office shortly after our investigation uncovered several constables serving with criminal records. While  it may be fairly easy for some of these men to get into office with just a few write-in votes, the process to remove them once they're convicted of a crime can be complicated. 

Since our initial report last summer only one constable with a felony has voluntarily stepped down. Scott Bond turned in his resignation a few weeks after pleading guilty to a federal firearms charge in Kentucky. 

The District Attorney's office decided to force two other elected law enforcement officers out.  An impeachment process was started against Larry Sheffield who was arrested in July for murder. Sheffield said he acted in self-defense, and his lawyer has said his client is only charged, not convicted.

But Mario Yow pleaded guilty to trafficking cocaine, and he has told FOX10 News he intends to finish out the remaining two years on his term. Assistant District Attorney Keith Blackwood said Yow has refused to be served any legal documents, and his defiance could stall efforts to remove him. 

"It could be delayed a period of months but our goal is to have this resolved very quickly.  We think that he needs to be removed from office now. We don't think he's qualified to hold the office now. So, our goal is to go ahead and have it resolved," Blackwood said.

Blackwood said Yow has a hearing set before a judge on May 22nd. Sheffield's impeachment trial is scheduled for June 8th. If either man fails to show up in court Blackwood said the District Attorney will ask for a default judgment to remove Yow, and the jury trial against Sheffield will proceed whether he's there or not.  

The proceedings for Sheffield and Yow are a little different, but Blackwood said both men will have an option to appeal the outcome if they choose to, to the Alabama Supreme Court.  
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