Bond for officer who fatally shot Andre Hill reduced to $1M

The judge in the case of an Ohio police officer charged with fatally shooting Andre Hill has reduced the bond of $3 million after the defense called it unconstitutional

Racial Injustice Columbus Police
Racial Injustice Columbus Police

The judge in the case of an Ohio police officer charged with fatally shooting Andre Hill reduced the high bond of $3 million Tuesday after the defense called it unconstitutional.

Franklin County Judge Stephen McIntosh lowered the bond during a hearing for former Columbus Police Officer Adam Coy to $1 million.

Defense attorney Mark Collins had filed a motion Sunday in an effort to reduce the bond for Coy, who is white and is charged in the December shooting death of 47-year-old Hill, who was Black, as he emerged from a garage holding a cellphone with his left hand and his right hand not visible. Coy pleaded not guilty to all four charges Friday.

Collins told reporters last week that he was planning to file a motion for bond reconsideration, citing the amount as inappropriate in comparison to the bail set in the cases of other on-duty police killings in the past year.

“Even the officer in the George Floyd case was given a $1 million bond, and this case is nothing like that in any way, shape or form,” Collins said after the Friday hearing. “Our client had a good faith basis to believe that the individual had a silver revolver and he responded. He’s done everything that’s been asked of him. And this $3 million bond is just what we feel inappropriate.”

The defense attorney made the case in the filing that Coy has no past criminal history, has lived most of his life in Ohio, and did not flee while knowing for weeks that charges were coming. Collins also offered to surrender his client's passport “should this court believe surrendering the passport would bolster his already proven track record of not being a flight risk.”

Coy, 44, was arrested Wednesday after a Franklin County grand jury indicted him following a monthlong investigation by the Ohio Attorney General’s office into the fatal shooting. Collins said his client has voluntarily complied with state investigators from the beginning and voluntarily surrendered himself to law enforcement shortly after being indicted.

During the hearing Friday, the attorney general’s office, which is prosecuting Coy, argued that the high bond was necessary. Republican Attorney General Dave Yost, Ohio’s top law enforcement official, said he was pleased with the bond.

“The Ohio Attorney General's Office cannot argue in good conscience that Adam Coy is a flight risk all of sudden when he has cooperated with their offices from the very beginning of their investigation and has done everything the police department and the Ohio Attorney General has asked of him,” the defense's motion read.

Franklin County Court Magistrate Elizabeta Saken also ordered Coy on Friday not to have contact with any witnesses in the case, including other police officers.

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Farnoush Amiri is a corps member for the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a nonprofit national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms to report on undercovered issues.

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