Thursday, January 27, 2011

Trial postponed
Former Kingsport priest's Scott Co. court date moved to JulyBy Wes Bunch

Published January 27th, 2011 | Added January 27th, 2011 4:15 am | Comments

William Casey

GATE CITY — A former Kingsport priest who is accused of molesting a young boy more than 30 years ago will not appear in a Scott County courtroom until this summer after his trial was delayed earlier this week.

William Casey, 76, 740 Shakerag Road, Greeneville, was originally scheduled to appear in Scott County Circuit Court at 9 a.m. Wednesday, but his motion hearing was instead moved to June 27 at 2 p.m.

Casey’s trial date was also continued from Feb. 11 to July 14-15.

The request was made at the beginning of the week by Casey’s attorney, Walt Rivers of Big Stone Gap, and was granted by 30th Circuit Judge John Kilgore.

Rivers asked for the delay so he could have more time to prepare for Casey’s trial and because he is currently serving on a defense team in an ongoing murder case in Wise County.

Rivers made a similar request in November 2010 that was also granted.

At his arraignment hearing in August 2010, Casey pleaded not guilty to charges of forcible sodomy and indecent liberties with a child that stem from allegations he sexually molested a young boy in 1978 during a trip to Natural Tunnel State Park.

Casey could face up to 25 years in prison if convicted of both charges.

Scott County Commonwealth’s Attorney Marcus McClung said his office is proceeding with the case as if it will go to trial.

“We anticipate all of our cases going to trial,” McClung said. “We have a case that is very serious, and we’re treating it that way, and we’re proceeding with it as if it’s going to trial.”

While he awaits trial, McClung said Casey will remain on house arrest and be required to continue wearing his electronic monitoring unit.

In October 2010, Casey pleaded not guilty in Sullivan County Criminal Court to a single count of first-degree sexual misconduct and two counts of aggravated rape.

That trial is set to begin April 11 in Blountville.

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