Jackson Police frustrated over murder suspect’s release

“I can’t speak to why these bonds are so low, especially as it relates to a murder charge,” Police Chief Lee Vance said.

Chief Vance says he’s just as frustrated and confused as most people are, when he found out Blackwell was able to get out of jail for such a low bond. She only had to pay 10% of a $1,000 bond.

“The criminal Justice system is designed to keep the public safe from criminals. We in law enforcement, have absolutely no power over these judges,” Chief Vance said. “Their thought process in releasing these individuals, really I don’t have a clue sometimes.”

Blackwell and Young are charged capital murder and auto theft. 81-year-old Lee Kendrick’s body was found  August 31 in an abandoned apartment in Jackson, days after he went missing.

Investigators took the stand Monday saying it was proven that she was in the room at the time of the murder, but it seems that proof wasn’t enough. Defense Attorney’s didn’t deny that Blackwell had a sexual relationship with the victim, but argued there was no evidence she pulled the trigger. Judge Melvin Priester Senior agreed there was probable cause, but set bond at 500 dollars for each charge. The District Attorney cited weak evidence as a factor in that decision.

“What I am concerned about is that cases like this are becoming typical in this county. People who are accused of committing terrible crimes are released with no bond, low bonds, etc. This is the part that creates the most frustration for us in law enforcement,” Chief Vance said. “Again, everybody has to be held accountable. As Police Chief, I have to be held accountable, but I do not have any power over those judges. I don’t have any power over what goes on in the court system.”


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