Only on 5: Principal's passenger speaks out about night of arrest - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Only on 5: Principal's passenger speaks out about night of arrest

By Jason Miles - bio | email | Follow us on Twitter

Popular principal Marty Pettigrew returned to work at Colonial Middle School after drug charges against him were dropped. 

Pettigrew, Hans Banks and another man were arrested last month after the principal was pulled over for speeding. Police found cocaine and marijauna in a pocket behind the driver's side seat of his Mercedes.

Banks, 26, is on probation. Charges against the other men were eventually dropped.

"The police stated in their affidavit they saw me moving in the back seat," Banks told Action News 5. "The buck was passed on me, and I didn't have enough information to fight my case."
Banks claims the drugs were already in the car when he hopped in that night. 

He says he met Pettigrew and a friend through a Web site.
"We were going to have drinks at Mr. Pettigrew's house," he said.
Defense attorney Marvin Ballin described Pettigrew's demeanor during their initial meeting as "at best, a basket case" because the principal was in danger of losing his job.
Ballin says the facts of the case speak for themselves: No drugs were found on Pettigrew's person. 
"And I just could not see him being convicted on this kind of evidence," he said.
While Pettigrew's life is back on track, Banks says his is not. "A lot of people have basically abandoned me because of this."
Ballin believes his client is also stuck with living down a regrettable evening.
"I think we've all heard the phrase, 'If you lie down with dogs, you get up with fleas,'" he said.  "Mr. Pettigrew is not gonna be seen with a dog again."
Action News 5's calls to Pettigrew were unreturned, but Reporter Jason Miles did receive a threatening phone call from a blocked number on Pettigrew's behalf.


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