Derrick Washington's attorney requests jury trial in domestic assault case

Friday, September 30, 2011 | 6:11 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — Derrick Washington's attorney, Christopher Slusher, requested a jury trial Friday for the domestic assault charges against Washington.

In a hearing Friday afternoon in the 13th Circuit of Boone County, Slusher made the request before Associate Circuit Judge Deborah Daniels, who had been scheduled to preside in Washington's court trial on two charges of third-degree domestic assault.

A court trial is a basic disposition hearing in misdemeanor cases where a defendant may enter a plea, or request a bench or jury trial, according to the court of clerks office. A court trial involves the judge and lawyers but no jury, much like a bench trial, which is a trial held before a judge without a jury.

Washington was arrested in September 2010 in connection with a dispute with his ex-girlfriend, in which the former MU football player struck the woman several times in the face with his fist.

Last week, Washington was found guilty in a separate incident of deviate sexual assault and is scheduled to be sentenced by Circuit Judge Kevin Crane on Nov. 7.

Daniels granted Slusher's motion for a jury trial and referred the request to Presiding Judge Gary Oxenhandler for scheduling.

After court, Slusher said the request was made in order to push the case to the circuit level, where it can be assigned to Crane. The request for the jury trial does not mean that negotiations with assistant prosecuter Andrea Hayes have stopped, Slusher said.

Washington was not in court on Friday.

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