Judge Dismisses Charges Against Five Star’s Ken Graham

Q Boyer
PHOENIX — Over what one observer termed “strong and repeated government objections,” Judge Rosalyn O. Silver yesterday dismissed all charges against Ken Graham, co-owner of Five Star Video and Five Star Video Outlet.

A source intimately familiar with the case who asked to remain anonymous told XBIZ that the prosecution rested their case after the jury had viewed three of the four videos that the government alleged to be obscene and dismissed the counts related to the fourth video.

After the prosecution rested both the noncorporate defendants, Graham and Five Star’s other co-owner Chris Ankeney, moved to dismiss the charges.

After extensive arguments the judge considered the arguments and ruled that insufficient facts had been presented by the government for a reasonable jury to find that Graham had sufficient knowledge and control of the materials charged in the case, according to the source.

The source emphasized to XBIZ that the judge made her ruling despite “strong and repeated government objections.”

“The judge indicated that it was a very close call for Mr. Ankeney, as well,” the source told XBIZ, meaning that the government had managed to produce just enough evidence to avoid dismissal of the charges against Ankeney.

With the dismissal of the charges against Graham and the dropping of charges against JM Productions last week, what started as a case with charges aimed at three human beings, (Graham, Ankeney and JM Production’s Jeff Steward), and three corporate entities (Five Star Video, Five Star Video Outlet and JM Productions) is now a case involving one human being and two corporate entities.

Jeffrey Douglas, attorney for Graham, and Richard Hertzberg, attorney for Ankeney, were unavailable for comment at press time.