An attorney for a Kansas University basketball player who is fighting a minor in possession of alcohol citation has mentioned an entrapment defense.
Ben McLemore, 19, faces a misdemeanor charge after he received a ticket Nov. 4 from a state Alcoholic Beverage Control officer. The officer alleged McLemore was found with a Red Bull and vodka at Abe and Jake’s Landing, 8 E. Sixth St.
Lawrence attorney Al Lopes filed the Feb. 17 motion asking District Judge Peggy Kittel to order prosecutors to disclose to the defense the identities of ABC officers and “decoys” and other information about the alleged events or to dismiss the case.
“The identity of all ABC agents and decoys is material to his defense of entrapment,” Lopes wrote.
Lopes gave this version of events in the motion:
l McLemore went to Abe and Jake’s that night but presented proper identification and wore a bracelet identifying him as underage and not eligible to purchase alcohol. He stayed away from the bar.
l While he talked with friends, “an unknown” female approached and offered to buy a drink. McLemore did not know her but accepted her offer. She purchased it with her own money, and he never went to the bar with her.
l When she returned she handed him the drink and left. He never saw her again.
l McLemore then was about to dispose of the drink “because he wore the bracelet and knew he was not supposed to drink,” but an ABC officer apprehended him.
“The only purpose of the ABC agents’ action was to catch a minor in possession just to institute a criminal prosecution,” Lopes wrote, adding the identity of the names of all ABC agents and their decoys will allow the defense to subpoena individuals as witnesses.
“We have responded to Mr. Lopes’ entire (earlier) discovery request from Jan. 13,” Douglas County District Attorney Charles Branson said. “We have no information in our records to suggest the facts of the event as recited by the motion are credible.”
McLemore, a freshman from St. Louis, is ineligible to play in games this season because the NCAA declared him a partial academic qualifier.
A hearing in the case is scheduled for Friday.