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Hampton asks to withdraw guilty plea

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By The Staff

By CINDY SIMPSON

csimpson@roanecounty.com

In a handwritten motion, an accused drug dealer has asked to withdraw his guilty plea on federal charges.

Daniel Hampton was arrested in 2007 on multiple charges, including conspiring to distribute 5 or more kilograms of a substance containing cocaine hydrochloride, 50 grams or more of cocaine base, or crack, 100 kilograms or more marijuana and the prescription painkiller Oxycontin. He entered a guilty plea to those charges in late April.

He is also accused of killing his wife, Dorothy Hampton, in 2007 in Rhea County and is still awaiting a murder trial at the state level.

The federal court granted Hampton’s request to appoint new counsel. That removes Jonathan Moffatt, who has been representing Hampton in the drug case, as his attorney of record.

Court documents state the request to withdraw the plea is under advisement. The U.S. Attorney’s Office opposes the withdrawal, according to court documents.

In his motion, Hampton said he  “did not understand what the factual basis was at the time of his guilty plea.”

Hampton added that he would not have signed a plea if it “contained the names of persons listed in the superseding indictment” because those charges were false.

“The defendant will stand by the fact that Emory Wayne Saylor should be released as should others,” the motion stated.

“The defendant is willing to take acceptance of responsibility for the crimes he did commit, but is refusing to accept responsibility for lies.”

Hampton wrote that he was under great duress at the time of the plea. That duress, he said, included mental health and emotional issues, including a reaction to his mental health medications.

Hampton also wrote that he was under the impression he was to go straight to Rhea County  “to appear in court in a case that involves life and death.”

“The defendant feels the promise to go straight there for court was a lie!” the motion added.

Hampton’s motion stated he was moved overnight to a jail in Ocilla, Ga., and inmates there explained the plea agreement to him.

He said he objected to the pre-sentence investigation but his attorney did not understand what he wanted so it was never done.

Hampton also said he believes he has shown cause and the lack of communication between himself and his attorney.

He said he will submit to a polygraph and/or a shot of sodium pentothal “to prove the government grossly exceeded the charges.”

“The defendant will prove that the governmet [sic] don’t let you go to court and tell the truth, no they give you a script and offer time cuts for people who will take the stand and perjur [sic] themselves,” he wrote, emphasizing, “WE don’t like being tricked!”

A sort of postscript follows about the government and Native Americans, saying the government cut deals with anyone they could and “then they started killing people.”

“The government don’t like you, they kill you or get read [sic] of you thats [sic] a fact!” he added.

“I have proff [sic] of their lies in my case, read whats [sic] been said so far, I see it!”