Matt Pitt case bound over to Jefferson Co. grand jury - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Matt Pitt case bound over to Jefferson Co. grand jury

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Matt Pitt appeared before Judge Katrina Ross in a Jefferson County courtroom on Monday. Source: WBRC video Matt Pitt appeared before Judge Katrina Ross in a Jefferson County courtroom on Monday. Source: WBRC video
Source: Jefferson County Sheriff's Office Source: Jefferson County Sheriff's Office
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

Youth evangelist Matt Pitt was in court today for a preliminary hearing to decide if there is enough evidence against him to go to trial. Pitt faces several charges including impersonating a peace officer.

FOX6 News learned shortly before 5 p.m. that the case will be bound over to a grand jury.

Pitt arrived at the courthouse around 10:30 a.m. Monday and appeared before Judge Katrina Ross. The hearing ended a little after noon, and the judge did not issue a ruling.

Jefferson County authorities charged Pitt with impersonating a peace officer in August. He faced a similar charge in Shelby County in 2012 and pleaded guilty.

The judge gave him probation but because of the Jefferson County charge, his bond was revoked and he's currently being held in the Shelby County Jail.

During today's testimony, the first witness, Sgt. Chris Sharit with the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office, testified about his investigation into the Jefferson County case.

He talked about meeting with the witness who says he saw Pitt and another person on a four-wheeler flash a badge and state they were a Jefferson County Sheriff's deputy.

Pitt's cousin also testified about being with Pitt on June 15 when he produced the badge. The cousin said Pitt never presented himself as a police officer.

The cousin said he and Pitt had been riding four-wheelers late into the night and left the four-wheelers and a BB gun in the woods. When they returned the next day to retrieve the BB gun and four wheelers, the cousin said someone in the neighborhood had found the gun and the ATVs nearby.

The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office says Pitt showed the resident a badge and presented himself as a law enforcement officer after the resident questioned what they were doing in the woods.

The sheriff's office investigated the case and charged Pitt with impersonating a peace officer about two months later, on Aug. 14.

Pitt's attorney, Carmella Penn, said Pitt's intention when he showed the badge was to show he wasn't a threat, and said he never presented himself as a police officer.

"I think it's critical and I think it's truthful about what happened out there," Penn said. "Nobody testified anything differently."

A prosecutor questioned whether or not the cousin's testimony was biased since he was related to Pitt.

Pitt's attorneys made a request to question Jefferson County Sheriff Mike Hale about the honorary badges but Judge Ross refused that request.

"We would have liked for him to come," Penn said. "I think it would have shed some light on something going on."

Copyright 2013 WBRC. All rights reserved.

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