West Ala. prosecutor held in contempt of court, sentenced to jail

Assistant District Attorney Michael Caddell, Jr was held in contempt of court and sentenced to...
Assistant District Attorney Michael Caddell, Jr was held in contempt of court and sentenced to jail during a virtual preliminary hearing in Perry County Wednesday.(Photo source: WDAM)
Published: Apr. 21, 2022 at 11:37 AM CDT
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PERRY Co., Ala. (WBRC) - Assistant District Attorney Michael Caddell, Jr was held in contempt of court and sentenced to jail during a virtual preliminary hearing in Perry County Wednesday, April 20, 2022.

According to court records, District Judge Robert Bryant issued an order stating Caddell ‘did obstruct, interrupt, disturb or hinder the court’s proceedings’ and sentenced Caddell to three days in the Perry County Jail. It’s unclear what precipitated this action.

Caddell was recently hired by Michael Jackson, the District Attorney for the Fourth Judicial Circuit which covers Perry, Bibb, Hale, Dallas and Wilcox Counties. Jackson said his office will file a motion to stay the jail sentence on Thursday in order to appeal the decision or Caddell will report to jail.

Jackson appeared frustrated during a news conference Thursday, focusing on the case that was before the court at the time of the hearing. He said Caddell was fighting for the victim in a case where the defendant had been charged with murder, attempted murder and had previously escaped the Perry County Jail. Jackson hasn’t seen a transcript from the hearing but explained Caddell’s repeated objections prompted the judge’s action. He said the Zoom hearing wasn’t recorded due to state court protocols and questioned why the judge didn’t mute Caddell.

“We’re very animated about fighting for victims,” Jackson added. “My Assistant District Attorney was upset, that’s what got his temperature up and he might have gotten a little too loud. I don’t disagree with the judge, but three days is a little too much, especially when fighting for a victim.”

Jackson pivoted to the lack of accountability for some defendants who don’t serve a day in jail, highlighting what he felt was a sentencing disparity.

“As District Attorney, it’s my job to keep fighting for victims, that’s what I’m going to do and we’re not going to apologize for that,” Jackson responded.

Jackson went on to commend Caddell’s willingness to serve three days in jail, something he’s ready to do if Jackson’s office isn’t granted a stay in the case.

The preliminary hearing in question was rescheduled for Thursday, Caddell won’t be representing the state. Jackson, along with another prosecutor, will be covering Judge Bryant’s courtroom in the near future.

Prior to being hired by the Fourth Judicial Circuit, Caddell was a prosecutor in the Tuscaloosa County and Montgomery County District Attorneys’ Offices.

WBRC reached out to Bryant, but he hasn’t responded.

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