Change of Venue Sought in SAU Horse Theft Case

The attorney for Jaci Jackson, the former Southern Arkansas University (SAU) student accused of stealing five horses and miscellaneous equipment from the university's Mulerider stables last year, is seeking a change of venue in the case on grounds that she will not receive a fair trial in Columbia County, Ark.

In November five Quarter Horses belonging to students members of the SAU collegiate rodeo team were taken from the university's Magnolia, Ark., campus. A horse trailer and a variety of equestrian equipment also taken from the stables were recovered shortly after the incident. Four of the missing horses and the remains of the fifth horse were later recovered in McCurtain County, Okla.

In December Arkansas State Police arrested Jackson in connection with the thefts. She was subsequently charged with six counts felony theft of property in Arkansas and three felony charges in Oklahoma. Jackson has pleaded not guilty to the Arkansas felony charges. A trial in the Arkansas case is slated for July 26 in Magnolia.

On July 10 a spokesman for Columbia County Prosecuting Attorney David Butler said that Jackson's attorney Michael Lusk has filed a motion seeking a new venue for the trail on grounds that prospective jurors from Columbia County would be prejudiced against Jackson.

Lusk was immediately unavailable for comment on the motion.

No hearing date for the motion has been set, Butler's spokesman said.

About the Author

Pat Raia

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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