But a federal judge dismissed her case against Choctaw County and Sheriff Cloyd Halford last month, ruling that because she had been indicted by a grand jury on the felony drug charge, none of her constitutional and legal rights were violated.
This undated photo released by the Oktibbeha County Sheriff's Office, shows Jessica Jauch.
Pulled over for traffic violations, Jauch was held for 96 days in a Mississippi jail in 2012, on a felony drug charge, without seeing a judge, getting a lawyer or having a chance to make bail, even though a police video showed she committed no crime.
But he believes Mississippi law already requires the swift appointment of a public defender for people facing charges that could result in prison.
In practice, though, local public defenders typically must wait for a judge to appoint them to a case.
The outcome has flummoxed civil liberties advocates who have been waging legal battles to reform Mississippi�s criminal justice system, which provides almost no state funding for public defenders. — Pulled over for traffic violations, Jessica Jauch was held for 96 days in a Mississippi jail without seeing a judge, getting a lawyer or having a chance to make bail.
She was charged with a felony based on a secretly recorded video that prosecutors finally acknowledged showed her committing no crime.
Halford says it's not his fault that Jessica Jauch was held for 96 days without a hearing before a judge, a lawyer or bail.
Halford and the county told a federal judge that scheduling such hearings were the responsibility of a state court judge or district attorney.
Only when she finally got a hearing and a lawyer, who persuaded prosecutors to watch the video, did the case fall apart.