Inmate severed from racial assault case

David Yates Jul. 10, 2011, 5:29am

Although a racial discrimination civil trial ended June 24 for three defendants, the fourth and final defendant has been served out, since he was in prison during the trial.

The trial of R.J. Freeman vs. Barnes Equipment et al began June 21 and focused on the alleged racially motivated assaults of Freeman, a black man, by his co-workers and also his subsequent termination by Barnes Equipment.

Freeman, a former Barnes Equipment employee, filed suit against the owners of the company, James and Stacy Barnes, along with two of its employees, Robert Flowers and Robert Deewees, on May 29, 2009, in Jefferson County District Court.

On June 24 Judge Bob Wortham, 58th District Court, issued a directed verdict, ordering that Freeman take nothing from all three defendants except for Flowers, court papers say.

Court records show that the suit's remaining defendant, Flowers, was served on June 27 because he "is currently in federal custody in the Liberty County Jail and requires transport in order to appear at trial."

"Neither party is prepared to pay the expense of the transport," the plaintiff's motion to sever states.

According to the lawsuit, Flowers, a white co-worker, assaulted Freeman and was charged over the incident.

Beaumont attorney John Parsons of the Lindsay Law Firm represents Freeman.

Case No. A184-180

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