John Kavann Franklin died in the aftermath of an aborted police chase on Sept. 16 of last year. He had been indicted as a co-defendant along with Mayfield on seven felony counts of breaking and entering and three felony counts of larceny, as a result of burglaries at the former Red Bull Racing and Fitz Motorsports NASCAR shops. Law enforcement officials say a number of items stolen in those burglaries was recovered on Mayfield’s property, but he has called the charges "baseless,” saying the property belonged to him and his wife, Shana.
Court papers described Franklin as a "co-defendant/primary witness… who can establish property was stolen from alleged victim,” adding that without him, there is now insufficient evidence to take the case to trial. Nine of the charges against Mayfield were dropped in November of 2012, with the final count dropped two weeks ago.
Mayfield still faces three felony counts of possession of stolen goods and one felony count of obtaining stolen goods by false pretenses in neighboring Catawba County, where items stolen from the NASCAR teams were allegedly recovered on his property. He also faces one felony count of possession of methamphetamine there. In Caldwell County, Mayfield faces four additional unrelated counts of felony larceny.
He is due back in Catawba County court on April 1.