DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The Dallas man accused of shooting an 8-year-old boy in the face was back before a judge on Wednesday. He was very close to getting out of jail, but the victim’s family and Dallas County prosecutors were not letting that happen without a fight.
Brian Cloninger’s bond was reduced earlier this month. The prosecutor in this case said that the suspect’s family has raised the $200,000 in cash necessary to get him released from prison.
The 46-year-old suspect has been accused of shooting 8-year-old D.J. Maiden in the face outside of a northeast Dallas apartment complex, although a motive in the case is not clear. A witness said that Cloninger shot the child “just because.”
Prosecutors filed a motion to reconsider and clarify the bond conditions. They said that the defendant’s wife was less than candid, and did not tell the court that two members of the family were already preparing the funds. The prosecutor also stated that Cloninger’s wife did not report that they own lake property.
The assistant district attorney presented the evidence on Wednesday, including recorded jailhouse telephone conversations between the defendant and his wife. Those conversations illustrate that the family was working on bonding Cloninger out of prison, despite testimony from a week and a half ago that indicated the contrary.
At the hearing on Wednesday morning, the judge raised Cloninger’s bond to $1 million cash or $5 million surety. However, that is not a final decision, as the defense will be granted time to respond to the new evidence. Another bond hearing has been set for Monday.
If released from prison, the prosecutor wants the judge to order Cloninger to wear a SCRAM alcohol monitor. They also want the suspect to be restricted to only his home except for the hours when he is at work. Finally, they want the judge to order that Cloninger have no contact with the 8-year-old victim or the boy’s family.
“We want him behind bars until the proceedings run its course, he either be found guilty or innocent or whatever,” explained Dallas activist Roy Williams. “That’s our concern, that he stay off the streets so he can’t retaliate against the family.”
Maiden is now out of the hospital, but his family said that he will require numerous surgeries to his face and jaw. His grandmother, Sharon Locklin, said, “He keeps asking us, ‘Is that man getting out? Is he coming here?’ Because he stays kind of close to us, and he’s afraid, and he says, ‘Granny, I want to move. I don’t want to stay here.'”
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