In Dothan, Ala., a courthouse Christmas tree decorated with photos of violent-crime victims has been moved, days after a local defense attorney filed motions that trials of clients of his, scheduled for next week be deferred until after the holidays, when the display would be gone.
“Tree was removed by DA,” wrote Billy Joe Sheffield in an email to ABC News. Sheffield had argued the tree, which had been put up by a victims’ rights organization called Victims of Crime and Leniency, might bias jurors against his clients.
Neither the District Attorney nor anyone else had made any announcement about moving the tree, Sheffield said. He speculated an editorial in yesterday’s Dothan Eagle (which wasn’t on the paper’s website) supporting his position may have prompted the move.
“I heard the Assistant District Attorneys moved it Sunday,” he said.