By JOSH NEWTON
A Tahlequah man accused of committing lewd acts to a girl is asking a judge to block his defense attorney’s attempt to withdraw from the case.
James “Jim” Neill Lindsey is tentatively set for jury trial in May on allegations that he sexually abused a girl over a period of years. He is formally charged with lewd or indecent acts to a child, performing a lewd act in the presence of a minor, and rape by instrumentation.
Lindsey, 56, is free on a $50,000 cash bond and has been represented by local attorney Jerry S. Moore since the charges were formally filed in January 2012.
But Moore this month sought permission from the courts to withdraw as Lindsey’s counsel. In his formal motion to withdraw, Moore gave no reason for the request, but said Lindsey and state prosecutors were aware of his intentions.
Lindsey this week filed an objection, saying he was not notified of Moore’s intent until 45 minutes before Moore filed the request in Cherokee County District Court. Lindsey said Moore called him and “refused to discuss” his request to withdraw.
Lindsey claims he has paid Moore 80 percent of the agreed-upon fees for taking the case through trial, and Moore’s withdrawal would leave Lindsey without sufficient funds to find a new attorney. Court records show Lindsey will be back in court May 16 for a criminal sounding docket. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.