Porn News

Jim and Wayne Philpot Found Not Guilty

Arkansas – from – The trial of two men and their corporation accused of promoting obscene material ended in a not guilty verdict late Friday night at the St. Francis County Courthouse.

The 12-member jury, consisting of seven men and five women, deliberated more than four hours before returning the not guilty verdicts against brothers Jim and Wayne Philpot and their corporation J&W Investments, Inc. Charges against a second corporation, R.J.J.W. Enterprises, Inc., were dismissed for lack of evidence before deliberation began.

The brothers and J&W Investments, Inc., were charged in November of 2008 with two counts of selling or promoting obscene materials after confidential informants with the sheriff’s department purchased movies from Adult World locations on Hwy. 38 near Interstate 40 at Widener.

Closing arguments ended Friday, just before 6 p.m., after attorneys spent several hours arguing over the instructions that would be presented to the jury.

The defense rested its case Friday afternoon without putting a single witness on the stand, and closing arguments began just after 4 p.m.

At around 11:15 Friday night, as attorneys discussed possible options regarding how the deliberations would continue into the night, the jury foreman knocked on the door and announced to bailiff H. N. Green that they had a verdict.

As jurors deliberated, there was some controversy in the courtroom after defense attorney James Benjamin of Tampa, Fla., who represented Jim Philpot, requested a mistrial when jurors may have seen County Judge Gary Hughes sitting in the jury box talking as everyone awaited the verdict.

“When this all got started years ago, I was told about this Judge Gary Hughes who was a staunch opponent of the stores, and I wanted to question him during the trial but wasn’t allowed. He’s been here all week for the trial, and the jurors have seen him sitting out there. Then, as we’re sitting here tonight, I see this guy sitting in the jury box with the bailiff and a deputy as we wait for a verdict. I asked someone who it was. They told me it was Gary Hughes, and then when they were delivering the jury their dinner, they opened the door and he’s sitting in the jury box looking in at the jury,” said Benjamin Friday night.

“I immediately jumped up and demanded a mistrial and told the judge that I had been told that Judge Hughes was a preacher and an opponent of the stores and now he’s sitting in the jury box watching the jurors when the door is open. I asked for the mistrial and said that I wanted him removed from the courtroom. Judge Neal denied my request for a mistrial, but did ask him to leave the courtroom and Judge Hughes did so,” said Benjamin.

When reached by telephone Monday morning, Hughes said he had no comment on the incident and also said that he did not wish to comment on the jury’s verdict.

Following the trial, Benjamin and defense attorneys H. Louis Sirkin, of Cincinnati, Ohio, and Bart E. Ziegenhorn of West Memphis, representing J&W Investments, Inc., all said that they were thrilled with the jury’s verdict.

“I’m extremely thrilled and happy for Jim and Wayne. I’m also thrilled for this community and what the jury has said. I think this is a victory not only for our clients, but also for the community and the state of Arkansas, and I think that once again the First Amendment has prevailed,” said Sirkin.

“I’m thrilled that the jury understood the law and applied it to the material involved in this case. I think this is another victory for the First Amendment. I’m thrilled for our clients because they’ve had to deal with this for a long time, and I want to thank the jurors because they put a lot of time and effort into their decision,” said Benjamin.

“I’m really pleased that we got a not guilty verdict in this case and happy that this is now over for Jim and Wayne because this has been a long fight for them,” said Ziegenhorn.

Both Philpot brothers were asked if they wanted to comment and declined on the advice of their attorneys, but Sirkin said, “These two men deserve a lot of credit because they were willing to stand up and fight for what they believe in. They fought for the First Amendment, and I think the people of St. Francis County should be proud of them. People all over this country should be proud of them because it’s people like them who are the true First Amendment heroes because they’re the ones who have to stand their ground,” said Sirkin.

Prosecutor Fletcher Long accepted the jury’s verdict saying, “That’s the jury’s verdict. This case was about community standards, and they determined that those movies met the standards in Arkansas.”

One of the jurors, Michael Humphries was willing to comment following the trial and said that he never felt the prosecution proved its case.

“I just never felt that the state proved its case. From the start of the trial, I just never felt like they provided us with the evidence to convict these men,” said Humphries.

The 2008 arrests were the last in a series of arrests at the stores near Widener Junction. During the trial jurors watched both of the DVDs in question in their entirety and watched a pair of 15-minute summary videos presented by the prosecution.


Related Posts

Eldorado, Exsens Partner for Virtual Training Event

BROOMFIELD, Colo. — Eldorado has partnered with Exsens for a virtual private training event on Oct. 4. The hour-long live event will be hosted by Exsens Senior Sales Manager for North and South America Rebecca Pinette-Dorin, and will focus on “the…

Sierra Banxxx Returns to Porn With Elegant Angel Scene

After a 10-year break, Sierra Banxxx is returning to porn with "Sierra Returns," a new scene available now from Elegant Angel.

Emily Willis Speaks About Mainstream Feature Debut ‘Divinity’

LOS ANGELES — The much anticipated new science fiction thriller “Divinity,” co-starring Emily Willis in her mainstream feature debut, will finally premiere in theaters next month. The film, written and directed by Eddie Alcazar and executive produced by acclaimed filmmaker Steven…

Abella Danger Joins FeetFinder

FeetFinder, a leading platform in the feet picture marketplace, has announced that AVN Award-winning performer Abella Danger has joined their community.

Michael Vegas-Shot ‘The Nanny’ to Screen at Glendale Film Fest

Mainstream thriller "The Nanny," for which adult performer director Michael Vegas served as cinematographer and lighting technician, screens this Saturday at the Glendale International Film Festival.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.