I reported earlier today on The Jena 6 Blog that Bell was probably near a deal; now it seems official.
According to this CNN article the deal should have him out by june of ’09 – a far cry from the 100 plus years district attorney Reed Walters initially wanted, and even from the 22 years he wanted when he was forced by lack of a case to drop the conspiracy to commit murder; but still illegally prosecuted Bell as an adult.
Bell was convicted of felony aggravated battery by an all white jury containing members with alleged ties to the Judge and the DA, back in July. While waiting on sentencing, facing 22 years, the conviction was overturned by the 3rd circuit court of appeals because Bell was not eligible to be tried as an adult, but they ruled he could be retried as a juvenile.
After Judge Mauffrey, the same Judge who allowed Bell to be illegal tried in the first place, tried to deny Mychael Bell a release on bail for a week; he was then freed 13 days after the overturning of his conviction.
Then, in a surprise to all legal watchers of this case, Bell was put back in jail by yet the same judge for a parol voilation based on the same actions his conviction was overturned on. He was out for only 15 days on house arrest. He went to a routine hearing for his parol in relation to an earlier case than the Jena 6 incident, and Judge Mauffrey surprisingly revoked his parole and put him in jail for 18 months on October 11th.
I spoke with Alan Bean of Friends of Justice, this evening; the social advocacy organization for the falsely accused who pushed the Jena Six story into the public eye. He says from what he's heard from direct contact with people in the court room, he was in Lafeyette today, not in Jena as I had thought; that the CNN reporting that Bell would be out by June sounds about right. He's being told 6 - 8 months. I'll have more of my interview with Mr. Bean in the next day or two either here at The Jena 6 Blog or at BlackPerspective.net
Having recieved conflicting reporting, I'm not sure if it is a misdemeanor deal for the 6 to 8 months, or a felony deal that is adding 6 to 8 months to the 9 plus he's already served from the time he was arrested in December 2006; where he is getting credit for time already served.