Family claims forgery led to SPD arrest

Published 12:00 am Sunday, February 3, 2008

The Selma Times-Journal

The family of Kourtney Hollman say his name was forged on a ticket to pave the way for Selma police officers to come on their property and arrest him.

Police Chief Jimmy Martin isn’t talking about the issue.

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The Hollman family gathered on the front steps of City Hall on Friday to draw attention to the two traffic tickets issued Kourtney Hollman on March 16, 2007. One of the tickets is for following too close and the other for an attempt to elude police officers.

Kourtney Hollman, 20, and his grandfather, Walter Hollman Jr., 61, face charges Tuesday in Selma Municipal Court for resisting arrest in the incident stemming from an attempted traffic stop by police officer Jason Whitt.

Selma attorney Faya Rose Toure said her clients, the Hollman family, are willing to take a lie detector test, but the officers told the Alabama Bureau of Investigation they would not.

“We believe that five of the officers on the scene gave false statements and falsified a citation to cover up their illegal actions and even more incredibly, to secure the convictions of Walter Hollman and his grandson, Kourtney, on criminal charges,” she said.

Michael Hollman, Kourtney’s uncle, said he believed the police forged his nephew’s signatures on the citation to give them a reason for going on Walter Hollman Jr.’s property in pursuit.

Toure said the family received no response from the city.

At least one of the officers, Whitt, is no longer with the police department. He declined last week to talk about why he’s no longer working at the Selma Police Department, saying, “It’s a long story.”

In a letter accompanying the ABI report released by Mayor James Perkins Jr., the mayor said an investigation had been conducted.

“For the record, It was reported to me that the administrative issues addressed in the report were addressed with the officers shortly after the report was received,” the mayor stated in the letter. “However, the city opted not to make any comment about our action because again, we did not want to do and say anything that could possibly impact the efforts of the district attorney or the attorney general.”

The recommendation of the ABI was for the case to be turned over to a grand jury. District Attorney Michael Jackson asked the attorney general to look into the case.