Federal prosecutors are calling Jackson Mayor Frank Melton’s destruction of an alleged crack house a “whiskey soaked, arbitrary exercise of power and violence.” The 59-year-old Melton and two police bodyguards were charged in July with violating the civil rights of two people in a sledgehammer attack on a duplex the mayor considered a drug den.
Trial is scheduled for Nov. 12. Prosecutors are asking the court to prohibit Melton from telling jurors that the duplex was a haven for illegal activity. Melton, on the other hand, believes the issue is central to his defense. A judge did not immediately rule on the matter. A gag order prohibits either side from discussing the case.