Trial begins for Downtown Jackson Partners President Ben Allen

JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) — The president of Downtown Jackson Partners accused of embezzling from the group appeared in court Monday.

The trial of Ben Allen is now underway at the Hinds County Courthouse.

Judge Winston Kidd heard pretrial motions in Allen’s case, and a jury has been selected.

Allen faces 10 counts of embezzlement, misuse of public funds and limitation of corporate donation.

One witness was also qualified, which means they are questioned without the jury to make sure both sides agree on the evidence.

Tameka Garrett will be called as a witness by the state.

District Attorney Robert Shuler Smith questioned her about donations to Mayor Tony Yarber by Allen.
An indictment says that Allen paid $86,000 toward Yarber’s inauguration gala.

Allen is also accused of embezzling a pickup truck, the insurance, and the tag cost.

Court documents that he paid his personal cell phone bill and two credit cards costing $44,000.

Opening statements are expected Tuesday morning.

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