Mann gets new attorney

SIGOURNEY- A Keswick man accused of sexually abusing a child under the age of 12 has been given a new court appointed attorney after apparent attorney-client tensions became insurmountable.

William Mann originally was being represented by Sigourney attorney Misty White, however White requested on March 6 to withdraw as Mann’s attorney, due to her inability to represent Mann at trial, because of a scheduling conflict. At the time of Mann’s February 28 arraignment, he pled not guilty and demanded a speedy trial, meaning that a trial date for Mann must be set to begin within 90 days. That trial date was originally set to begin on April 9.

Judge Joel Yates granted White’s motion to withdraw later on March 6, and appointed Oskaloosa attorney Jeff Smith to represent Mann. Smith, on March 18, waived Mann’s right to be brought to trial within 90 days. Smith also, at that time, requested trial be postponed, a request that Judge Lucy Gamon granted on March 28th.

However, on April 8th, Mann wrote a letter to the Court asking that Smith be removed as his attorney, saying that they did not agree on trial strategy, and claiming that Smith was neglecting his case.

“Jeff and I aren’t seeing eye to eye. He won’t speak to my wife, and has hung up on one of my character witnesses, which made me upset and them upset,” Mann wrote in his letter. “I don’t feel he is trying to help me,” Mann also wrote.

Smith followed up Mann’s letter with a formal motion to withdraw later on April 8th.

“The Defendant and the undersigned have developed irreconcilable differences which make the undersigned’s continue representation ineffective,” Smith wrote in his motion.

For more on this story and others, catch the April 24 edition of the News-Review.