As a multi-defendant federal drug trafficking case motors along regarding a Glynn County shed used as a stash house, two matters of consequence popped up this week.
In one, U.S. Magistrate Judge Stan Baker allowed Jesup attorney Juanita Holsey to withdraw as Anthony Bernard Lewis’ legal counsel. She filed a motion July 31 stating she wished to withdraw because Lewis, also known as Amp, wanted to fire her and get a new appointed attorney. Lewis’ motion for new counsel is sealed and unavailable.
According to the clerk’s minutes of the Wednesday hearing, which was closed, there were around 10 minutes of discussion between Baker, Lewis and Holsey before Baker granted both Lewis’ and Holsey’s motions. However, new counsel had yet to file a notice of appearance with the court by press time Friday.
Lewis faces charges of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and distributing cocaine, crack and marijuana, along with using a phone to facilitate that conspiracy.
Lewis was originally charged along with 15 other defendants in March for being involved in a drug-trafficking conspiracy allegedly run from a shed on the property of Brunswick pawn shop manager who prosecutors say allowed use of the space in the shed in exchange for a personal cocaine supply.
In the second drug-shed case matter, Baker revoked Tommy Murray’s pretrial release. According to the filed report, Murray provided urine samples in March, April and May that tested positive for marijuana, and that Murray lied twice to probation officers about his marijuana use.
As for the $50,000 bond, Baker had it forfeited but set aside as the ends of justice would not be served by making the person responsible for covering the bond pay. He wrote in the report that the person “does not appear to be responsible for Murray’s violations of his pretrial release conditions, and there is no evidence that she participated in Murray’s admitted violations or was even aware of those violations,” thus making it unjust for her to be required to pay.
Murray pleaded guilty Aug. 1 to illegal use of a phone and is awaiting sentencing. He faces up to four years in prison and one year supervised release.