UPDATE: May 23, 2017: A former Raleigh County Sheriff’s Deputy starts his second trial for drug dealing charges after the first was declared a mistrial.
Marquel Ali is charged with two counts of possession of a controlled substances with intent to deliver.
His trial started again this week and Tuesday Raleigh County Asst. Prosecutor Julianne Wisman said several law enforcement officers testified on behalf of the state.
Back in June 2015 Ali and his cousin Jarelle Johnson were arrested after police said they found marijuana and cocaine in Ali’s car. Johnson already pleaded guilty to the same charges Ali is facing.
Wednesday, May 24 the state continues its arguments at 9 a.m. in Raleigh County Circuit Court.
3:15 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2017 UPDATE:
A mistrial was declared in the trial for former Raleigh County Sheriff’s Deputy Marquel Ali. Judge John Hutchison took the action after he discovered people in the courtroom were talking to witnesses about the trial.
This action means the trial procedure must go back to the beginning. A pre-trial hearing has been scheduled for May 22. Mr. Ali will remain out on bond as the new trial procedure moves forward.
ORIGINAL STORY: The trial continued for a former Raleigh County sheriff’s deputy on drug charges Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2017.
Marquel Ali’s first day on trial after jury selection wrapped up around 4:30 p.m. after starting at noon.
Ali didn’t testify, but there was cross examination from other witnesses on the day the ex-deputy was arrested for having drugs in his car. A drug task force officer, a former parole officer, and Beckley police drug officer took the stand, Tuesday.
The defense argued that the bag of drugs found in the trunk of Ali’s car in June, 2015 were not his and that he didn’t know it was even there.The defense continued by saying Jarrell Johnson, the person with Ali who was also arrested that day, never had any marijuana in his pockets, either.
“Police said they smelled a bag of weed in the passenger’s shorts pocket at the Burger King drive through in the middle of the day, with the bag of Burger King food there,” Jack Dolance, defense attorney, told the jury.
But the prosecution side argued the story on Ali not knowing about the drugs couldn’t be true, because there was a receipt with Ali’s name on it inside the bag.
“In the trunk was an overnight bag, and in that bag were four separate bags of illegal controlled substances,” Julianne Wisman, Raleigh County assistant prosecutor, told the jury. “Two bags of marijuana, one bag of cocaine and crack cocaine. Also in that bag, just under the drugs was a shopping receipt, that says, ‘Thanks Marquel Ali for shopping with us.'”
Back on June 23, 2015 Ali and Johnson were arrested for being found with a large amount of marijuana and cocaine in Ali’s car. They were charged with two counts of possession of controlled substances with intent to deliver and one count of conspiracy.
Ali had been sworn in as a Raleigh County Sheriff’s deputy back in 2014. Wisman said Ali could serve no less than three and no more than 25 years if the jury finds him guilty.
The trial picks back up at 9 a.m. on Feb. 15, 2017.