TARRANT COUNTY (KFDX/KJTL) — Jury selection for the trial of a once-prominent Wichita Falls automobile business leader is set to begin Monday in Fort Worth at the Tim Curry Criminal Justice Center.
Anthony Patterson is facing charges on sex crimes involving children, and we could soon know his fate.
It’s a trial that some thought was going to get delayed even further after the defense filed a motion last week, requesting that Jandreani Bell, Patterson’s co-conspirator, surrender her cell phone to extract material that would be favorable to Patterson’s case, but that motion was ultimately denied by presiding Judge Meredith Kennedy.
Anthony’s alleged crimes were first brought to light back in February of 2021. At the time, he was the Patterson Auto Group President, and he had just been charged with human trafficking and indecency with a child.
He was later indicted on 20 felony charges involving child trafficking and child sex crimes.
The investigation into those charges began way back in 2017. It was a multi-year, multi-agency investigation between the Texas Rangers, FBI, WFPD, Wichita County DA’s Office and State Attorney General’s Office.
Jandreani Bell allegedly was the woman who helped him get at least two of his alleged victims.
Patterson allegedly trafficked Bell’s relatives, two girls from Vernon, for sexual purposes in his home. Those girls were just 8 and 10 years old at the time.
The prosecution stated that they plan to introduce a laundry list of alarming offenses during Patterson’s trial, dating back as far as 1995 and Patterson’s college days.
If convicted, Patterson faces up to life in prison for the trafficking charge and up to 10 years for indecency with a child by exposure.
The prosecution hopes to get stacked sentences against Patterson if he’s convicted of two or more of the charges filed against him in 2021. Those include one count of continuous trafficking of a child, two counts trafficking of a child and two counts of indecency with a child.
If you’re wondering why this trial isn’t happening in Wichita County, the defense filed for a change of venue after doing a phone survey of potential Wichita County jury panel members.
It took 3,600 calls to obtain 400 responses, many of which concluded they had formed a negative opinion of Patterson, so things moved to Tarrant County over the prosecution’s initial objection.
Jury selection for the trial is slated to begin at 1:30 Monday afternoon, October 30, 2023.
The prosecutor and defense will have an hour and a half to question potential jurors, and a panel of 100 will be summoned. The trial is anticipated to last two weeks.
This is the third high-profile trial this year to be moved from Wichita County to Tarrant County here in Fort Worth.
Markeshia Jackson and Digital Reporter Josh Hoggard will be here to bring you minute-by-minute coverage of the Patterson Trial.
We’ll be live blogging from the start of testimony, which we believe will begin on Wednesday. be sure you stay with us on-air and online.
This is a developing story. Stick with Texoma’s Homepage for updates as more information becomes available. All individuals charged with a crime are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.