Rickey Stokes confirmed he was ordered arrested on two counts of unlawful imprisonment, both misdemeanors. He was booked into the Dothan city jail and released on $1,000 bond. The warrants were apparently issued after the men filed complaints with the magistrate’s office.
The incident, according to Stokes, is a result of an ongoing dispute with City Judge Rose Garden and the city’s judicial system. “Anytime you anger the judge and city attorney over an issue when they’re not doing their job and not treating people right you expect it. It’s par for the course for Rose Gordon and Len White (the city attorney).”
Stokes spoke exclusively with WDHN/DothanFirst outside the city jail while waiting to be booked on the charges. He said allegations that his actions were racist are unfounded. “The first time I thought of the gentlemen’s color is when (people) started asking me if it was two black men.”
The incident occurred June 4 when Stokes handcuffed the men to the door of the city courtroom located within the police department. He said Greg Tiller and Jonathan Reese had failed to appear in court the previous day. Stokes said he took the men to the court to resolve the matter but, because warrants had not yet been issued, court officials refused to help.
Stokes, who also owns an opinion-driven website, said he chained the men to draw attention from what he terms “an ineffective” court system. The men were freed by police officers a few minutes later and they were given new court dates.
Stokes actions have drawn criticism from some including Rev. Kenneth Glasgow, a civil rights activist, who told WDHN last week that handcuffing Tiller and Reese to the door was a “despicable act.”
Stokes was also arrested on a city warrant several years ago. It alleged he falsified paperwork related to his business, A-Advantage Bonding. He was convicted in city court but exonerated on appeal. A specially appointed circuit judge found Stokes not guilty on a direct verdict after ruling the prosecution failed to present sufficient evidence.
Stokes said he also expects to be cleared of the current charges as well. “I haven’t doing anything wrong. I haven’t violated a law.”
Gordon and White were not immediately available for comment.
If convicted, Stokes could be sentenced up to a year in jail on each count.
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