This morning candidate for Second Judicial (Bienville, Claiborne, Jackson Parishes) District Attorney Danny Newell responded to our query on whether or not he would have prosecuted the Simmons alleged perjury case.
Good morning Walter. Sorry for the delay in responding.
I have reviewed everything you provided which included the grand jury indictments of Mrs. Simmons and Mr. Jackson as well as Judge Teat’s Reasons for Judgment. I was not provided with a transcript of the testimony of Mrs. Simmons, a transcript of the testimony of Mr. Jackson, the investigative report of law enforcement nor the transcripts/statements made by all the witnesses interviewed by the district attorney’s office. I also do not know if Judge Teat held either of the witnesses in contempt of court for perjury.
Additionally, I have no idea what evidence was presented to the Grand Jury by the district attorney’s office in order to get the indictments. I don’t know if the evidence presented later turned out to be inaccurate or if witnesses became unavailable or changed their testimony. I don’t know what may have changed after the Grand Jury reviewed the case.
In short, I do not have nearly enough information to make a decision to prosecute or not prosecute.
When we receive a response from Chris Bowman, we will also post his reply.