Former Cuero running back receives two-year sentence
Oct. 24, 2012 at 5:24 a.m.
Updated Oct. 25, 2012 at 5:25 a.m.
CUERO - Trent Jackson went through spring drills with the Blinn College football team. But the former Cuero running back isn't playing football this fall.
Jackson, 19, is headed to state prison for two years and will be paying a fine of $8,718.56.
Jackson was sentenced by a DeWitt County jury on Wednesday, a day after being found guilty of felony forgery of a financial instrument.
The seven-woman, five-man jury needed only five minutes to decide the sentence, which was the maximum allowable.
The fine matched the total amount of the forged checks Jackson cashed at a Cuero bank in August of 2011.
"I appreciate the jury's work and verdict," said DeWitt County District Attorney Michael Sheppard, who prosecuted the case. "It was the only thing to do. I'm saddened that he has to go to prison for two years, but this will give him an opportunity to straighten out his life. He was headed on an absolutely destructive course and I hope this helps."
Jackson's attorney, John Herrick of San Antonio, declined to comment, but argued for probation.
"You've got a 19-year-old boy's future in your hands," Herrick told the jury during closing arguments.
Herrick informed District Judge Michael P. Kelly of his intention to appeal the verdict.
Jackson took the stand during the punishment phase and continued to deny his guilt in the forgery conviction, but apologized to his father, James Jackson, for the wrong choices he made.
"I just disappointed him," said Trent Jackson, who broke into tears when his father testified on his behalf. "I hate to see him hurt."
Cuero police officers Steven Ellis and Jerome Hernandez testified about Jackson's arrest on felony possession of marijuana in a drug-free zone charges in June 2011.
They were followed to the stand by Victoria police officer Jason Stover, who described how Jackson fled on foot after a car he was riding in was pulled over in August of 2012.
Stover said the car contained a backpack with marijuana in individual bags and that he apprehended Jackson after finding him hiding under a house.
Jackson was charged with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and evading arrest by fleeing.
Jackson is currently on probation after pleading to a misdemeanor possession of marijuana charge in Goliad County.
Jackson broke the Cuero single-season rushing records as a freshman in 2008 and sophomore in 2009, while earning all-state honors.
He set the school's single-game rushing record by rushing for 385 yards as a junior before tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee in the next game and missing the rest of the season.