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Third county judge recuses herself from Smith case

JACKSON, Miss.- A third county judge has washed her hands of the case against Hinds County District Attorney Robert Shuler Smith.

Judge Larita Cooper-Stokes has recused herself from the case citing a conflict of interest that would prevent her involvement.

Cooper-Stokes is the third and final county judge to be removed from the case. She is preceded by Judge William Skinner and Judge Melvin Priester, SR. The decision for Cooper-Stokes to be off the case was discussed at a Wednesday meeting which included Smith’s attorney, Cooper-Stokes and three lawyers from the Attorney General’s office.

D.A. Smith faces six counts of illegally advising men charged with crimes. It is state law that attorney generals and district attorneys can not “consult, advise, counsel or defend” any person who has been charged with a crime.

If found guilty Smith could be removed as DA and banned from holding any other elected position. He could also face a $500 fine.

For more information on this developing story, click here:


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