Jesse Lee, a Gulfport resident and food vendor, pled not guilty to a battery on a law enforcement officer charge stemming from an incident outside City Hall on July 22, 2021. Lee entered the plea in circuit court on Nov. 10.
Lee faces the felony charge after allegedly throwing and hitting Gulfport Police Commander Joshua Stone with a CD.
According to police, Stone responded to a call Lee made to the department regarding “a disk that was given to him after (a) public records request.”
Lee called the Gulfport Police and requested to speak to an officer outside city hall, which he said was corrupted, according to the criminal complaint. The officer met him outside, as police had, at the city’s request, previously trespassed Lee from city hall – which includes the police department –as well as the city’s community development building.
According to charging documents, Lee was upset about the disk and Stone said he would take the disk, which contained video footage, and try to watch it.
“While walking away the defendant yelled at the victim calling him a ‘douchebag’. After making that (comment) the victim turned around and placed the disk on top of the trashcan next to the defendant and walked away. At that moment the defendant became (irate) and picked up the disk demanding a new copy and threw it at the victim striking him on his leg as he was turned with his back facing the defendant walking away,” according to the criminal complaint.
Lee was arrested by police the same day as the incident.
Lee’s defense attorney, Rick Fletcher, declined comment on the not guilty plea and the overall case.
A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for Nov. 19.
Full disclosure: The Gabber Newspaper has had the Gulfport Police Department trespass the accused from the newspaper office.