Sanders hearing to be continued April 12

The lawsuit accuses Sanders of using excessive force on an inmate in August 2011.

On Thursday afternoon, former Columbia police officer Robert Sanders appeared for a brief hearing at the Boone County Courthouse.

Sanders is charged with third-degree assault and faces up to a year in jail after surveillance cameras captured him using excessive force against inmate Kenneth Baker in a holding cell in August 2011. He was fired from the Columbia Police Department a month after the incident, and charges were filed a year later. CPD dropped its charges against Sanders last year, but the state has continued to pursue charges against him.

This hearing will be continued at 10:30 a.m. on April 12, making it the second time the hearing was rescheduled.

The prosecution asked to schedule another appearance date so it would have more time to review the case file. Associate Circuit Court Judge Carol England granted the prosecution's request after Sanders' new prosecutor, Mark Richardson, said he had yet to receive files regarding the case.

Sanders was represented by Scott Timothy Jansen at the hearing, who did not object to the change of schedule.

A copy of the court file was sent to the office of Sanders' attorney, Prosecutor Mark Richardson, on Wednesday, according to a clerk's note on the docket entries found on the Missouri Courts website.

Richardson is currently serving his second term as Cole County Prosecuting Attorney, according to his website. Richardson previously served six years as an assistant prosecuting attorney in the same office from 1985 to 1992, and he served four two-year terms as the elected Jefferson City municipal judge beginning in 1999. Richardson graduated from the University of Missouri School of Law in 1984.

The case was handed over to Richardson on Jan. 18, according to the Missouri Courts website. Prosecutor Mike Fusselman originally served as special prosecutor for the case but filed a motion to withdraw due to a conflict that was not explained.

Sanders was recently reunited with his K9 dog, Fano, after CPD refused to give it to him. CPD sold Fano to Clarence Police Chief Raymond Barton for $1, who then made his dollar back by selling the dog to Terry Toalson, who works for the Ashland Police Department. Toalson, in turn, reunited Sanders and Fano.

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