Ex-Chesapeake councilman has trial postponed again

Published 12:00 am Sunday, December 18, 2011


CHESAPEAKE — For the fourth time, the trial of a former Chesapeake village councilman has been rescheduled.

The trial of Scott Taylor, 43, had been set for Friday in Lawrence County Municipal Court. Taylor faces multiple misdemeanor charges including assault, aggravated menacing, resisting arrest and domestic violence and a citation for possession of marijuana.

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The charges stem from two separate incidents that happened this spring.

After approximately an hour in the chambers of visiting Judge Steven Story from Meigs County, the prosecution and defense appeared in court with Taylor’s attorney, Tyler Smith, asking for another continuance.

Both continuances focused on the appearance of a defense witness who is coming from South Carolina. The first was because of a scheduling conflict.

“(Friday) the subject is unable to get funds (to come to Ohio),” Smith told the court. “She couldn’t make it on a fixed budget. The testimony is to be exculpatory.”

Assistant Prosecutor Jeff Smith told the court that the prosecution was ready to proceed.

“But we understand the situation for the defense and the court has to be concerned if this witness has exculpatory evidence,” Jeff Smith said.

Story said he was granting the continuance “reluctantly,” he said. “If it is a critical witness for the defense.”

At least one of the 14 witnesses who had waited at the courthouse for more than two hours spoke out against the continuance.

“This is just ridiculous,” Barbara Dement said. “It is unfair to us. I object.”

Dement was among about a dozen prosecution witnesses who were either neighbors of Taylor or observed one of the two arrests.

On April 17, sheriff’s deputies arrested Taylor after neighbors complained he had spoken multiple obscenities to them, threatened to kick pets and made an obscene gesture.

At that time deputies reported that Taylor became belligerent, allegedly tried to tear down his porch light and began screaming.

When deputies attempted to arrest him, Taylor kicked off his prosthetic leg and was carried to the patrol car and later to jail, according to the sheriff’s report.

Then on May 30, Taylor was arrested again after his then wife, Julie, contacted village police alleging her husband had held her down against her will.

The alleged incident happened when Julie Taylor arrived at their Chesapeake home to find two adult women running from the house.

In November the Chesapeake Village Council vacated Taylor’s seat because of excessive absences. The village’s charter only allows a council member to miss at most three meetings during his term.

Taylor, who went on council in January 2010, had missed six meetings.

Council was unable to appoint a replacement during its December meeting because it lacked a quorum.

The new trial is set for Jan. 27 at 11 a.m. at the Chesapeake courthouse.