Lawyer says court won’t move trial over complaints of Confederate statue at courthouse

Published 12:27 pm Friday, October 4, 2019

The lawyer for a black man seeking to move his trial from a Louisiana courthouse with a Confederate statue out front says the state’s Supreme Court won’t move the trial.

Niles Haymer says the court denied the appeal by a 6-0 vote. One justice abstained. No reason was given.

Haymer’s client, Ronnie Anderson, faces a charge of illegal possession of a stolen firearm. Anderson argues the Confederate monument outside the East Feliciana Parish Courthouse is a “symbol of racial intolerance, oppression and intimidation.”

Lower courts have rejected his efforts. The Advocate reported the judge who rejected Anderson’s request in November said it’s “just a piece of granite,” and the American flag is the only symbol inside the courtroom. The district attorney says the parish tries to ensure colorblind justice.