Bozeman to be given court date

Morgan coach to turn himself in next week for two charges

February 09, 2007|By Paul McMullen | Paul McMullen,SUN REPORTER

Morgan State men's basketball coach Todd Bozeman will turn himself in to Virginia authorities next week, when a preliminary court date will be set for two misdemeanor charges against him stemming from an argument in a Farmville restaurant.

Jim Ennis, the Prince Edward County attorney, said that it would be at least an additional month, and possibly two, before Bozeman's case is heard. The coach is charged with first-degree assault and battery and third-degree curse and abuse.

"Mr. Bozeman will turn himself in one day next week," Ennis said. "After he is served with the warrant, he'll be taken before a magistrate. At that time, the magistrate will set a bond and we will set a court date that is agreeable to my office and defense counsel, and when witnesses are available.

"We may, or may not, be able to set a specific date. We may set a preliminary date for docket control, and then move that court date. I fully expect it will be after the basketball season. I'm sure this will not come up on the docket for at least another month, and it could be two months."

At the earliest, Morgan State's season would conclude at the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference tournament, which will be held March 6-10.

Asked whether he expected the case to go to trial, Ennis said: "I presume so. I have had some preliminary conversations with Mr. Bozeman's attorney. They have not consisted of the substance of the case, but what do we need to do to have him turn himself in."

Ennis said his office is still in the investigative stage.

"We're waiting for police reports, witness reports, things of that nature," Ennis said. "There are at least five independent witnesses, possibly 10."

On Monday, Bozeman told The Sun: "I'm confident that the facts, when they come out, the record will be set straight. ... I'm going to go down there and take care of it."

Bozeman was charged Saturday, when he returned to Mulligan's restaurant seeking a refund after a delivery order for the Morgan State team was not filled to his specifications.

A manager at the restaurant said Bozeman used obscene language and placed his hands on a female employee.

Under the Virginia code, the penalty for assault and battery is 12 months in prison and/or a $2,500 fine. The penalty for curse and abuse is a fine of no more than $500.

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