A calmer Lee begins to plan strategy; Churchwell appears in court

Indicted former MLGW president Joseph Lee was back at the federal courthouse in Memphis Thursday to finish up some final paperwork.

Lee's demeanor was more like his usual self Thursday, compared to what the public saw one day before.

Just after 9:00 a.m., Lee and attorney Robert Spence entered the federal building to finish Lee's intake process after Wednesday's indictments.
Lee would not answer any questions, a stark change from a interview Wednesday, minutes after he found out he had been indicted.

"This is ridiculous," he said Wednesday. "This ridiculous. You should read these charges. It's ridiculous."
The grand jury charges contend Lee kept MLG&W from cutting off the utilities of City Councilman Edmund Ford, who was also indicted, in exchange for Ford's support on the City Council.

As they left the Federal building Thursday, his Spence said he and Lee had calmed down since Wednesday's fiery interview, and are moving on to plan their strategy.

"Emotions have tempered somewhat," Spence said. "Now we are preparing and getting ready for what's before us. We intend to put forward a vigorous defense. So we are getting ready."

Lee's next appearance before a magistrate will be for his arraignment.

Churchwell appears in court

Dennis Churchwell made a quick dash for his car trying to dodge the media Thursday morning.

Just minutes before he'd been in-front of a magistrate on six counts of perjury to a grand jury.
Churchwell was Edmund Fords landlord.  The indictment against him says he forgave some of Ford's rent in return for the councilman's support on an issue in-front of the city council then lied to the grand jury about it.

Thursday, Churchwell was released on his own recognizance.

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