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Bond hearing postponed for Lasseter's son

LAWRENCEVILLE -- John Fanning will have to wait a little longer for the possibility of bond.

Fanning -- who also is awaiting federal prison time from his role in a corruption scheme with mother and former Gwinnett Commissioner Shirley Lasseter -- has been in Gwinnett County jail since his Oct. 5 arrest on charges stemming from an alleged assault on his estranged wife.

During a scheduled bond hearing Thursday in front of Gwinnett Judge Debra Turner, his attorney instead asked for more time to gather evidence before making a pitch for his client's release on bond.

"There's information that we'd like to present that we haven't gathered yet," attorney Ralph Hunstein told the Daily Post after the hearing.

He declined to elaborate.

Fanning, 34, had bond initially withheld in the October arrest in which he was charged with aggravated assault and false imprisonment, both felonies, as well as interfering with a 911 call and third-degree cruelty to children. The final charge involves acts of violence in the presence of children.

According to Gwinnett County police, Fanning attacked his wife, Lesley, with a table and table leg at his Bold Springs Road home near Dacula before fleeing into the woods. He also reportedly prevented Lesley from calling for help or leaving.

The incident triggered a SWAT call from the Gwinnett sheriff's department. Authorities found Fanning hiding in the brush and arrested him without incident.

Hunstein, his attorney, said he believes the bond hearing postponed Thursday could ultimately be unnecessary.

"I do believe there's a possibility the case could resolve as well," he told Turner.

A new hearing was tentatively scheduled for mid-December.

Meanwhile, a 57-month federal prison term continues to loom over Fanning's head. Alongside business partner Carl "Skip" Cain, Fanning pleaded guilty earlier this year to participating in a scheme to sell his mother's county commission vote on a proposed real estate development.

He also pleaded guilty to trafficking cocaine in a related incident.

His mother -- longtime Duluth mayor and county commissioner Shirley Lasseter -- is scheduled to begin her own 33-month bribery sentence on Dec. 12. She was in the courtroom Thursday afternoon for Fanning's hearing.

It has been unclear if federal authorities plan to await Fanning's local prosecution before ordering the start of his federal sentence. He was originally ordered to report to prison within a few weeks of his September sentencing.