Trial begins for suspended DA Mark Jones after alleged ethics violations

Trial begins for suspended DA Mark Jones after ethics violations
Published: Nov. 8, 2021 at 2:50 PM EST
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Jury selection is underway for the trial of suspended Columbus District Attorney Mark Jones.

Jones is facing nine felony counts and potentially faces 30 years behind bars.

Columbus District Attorney Mark Jones is seen talking with a police officer on bodycam footage about a case from earlier this year.

You may remember 18-year-old Sara Holtrop - who was shot and killed at a home in east Columbus back in February.

Police say Holtrop was shot on Carmel Drive while asleep on a couch. News Leader 9 is told the 18-year-old was shot by 20-year-old Elijah Farral on accident.

Jones claims Farral shot her on purpose because he thought she was cheating on him.

Jones is also facing two counts of bribery.

According to prosecutors, Jones offered now acting District Attorney Sheneeka Terry $1,000 to get a murder conviction in a case.

He’s also accused of offering another assistant district attorney a bonus to announce a separate case was ready for trial when it was not.

It’s also important to point out - just ahead of trial - a judge over the case made the ruling to remove Jones’ attorney - Chris Breault - from representing the suspended district attorney.

The judge cited it would be a conflict of interest for Breault to represent Mark Jones in the case since Breault is a material witness for the state.

And we now know Attorney Katonga Wright will be representing Jones in the case. Wright tells the judge she filed a continuance to allow herself more time to prepare to go to bat for jones.

The motion was denied. The judge in the case says she hopes to have a jury selected by Monday evening, and anticipates opening statements to begin Tuesday morning.

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