Just days after spending his 30th birthday behind bars a Paoli man facing a murder charge got a gift in the form of a drastically reduced bond.
It came earlier this week for Johnny Ray Speerbrecher, who dressed in an orange inmate suit, quietly listened and watched in a Garvin County District courtroom as his defense attorneys successfully convinced a judge to drop the bond keeping him jail for nearly 2 years.
Speerbrecher continues to face a first-degree murder charge stemming from the death of his 2-month-old son back in March 2009.
His first jury trial last month in a Pauls Valley courtroom ended in a mistrial as jurors announced they couldn’t reach a verdict. It was later announced the jury was hung up at a 9-3 vote count in favor of acquittal.
During this week’s hearing at the defense’s request District Judge Greg Dixon did agree to drop the bond from $250,000 down to $25,000 but strongly tied several conditions to Speerbrecher if he is able to get the bond posted.
Dixon himself described the conditions as incarceration away from jail if Speerbrecher is freed from Garvin County’ jail where he has remained locked up since December 2009.
“This will be house arrest for Mr. Speerbrecher,” Dixon said.
“I would place him in a place of confinement but just not our county jail,” he said. “He will be confined to a residence.”
Conditions for Speerbrecher include him living in a residence where no minor children are present, he will be required to have a GPA monitor on him at all times and he will have no unsupervised visits with his own children.
If bond is ever posted and Speerbrecher is freed from jail he would be tested on a regular basis for alcohol and illegal drugs, he couldn’t leave the state without permission and he could only have contact with a limited number of witnesses in the case.
Put simply the judge said Speerbrecher would be confined to one residence and not ever allowed to leave.
Dixon did add he would later consider the possibility of allowing Speerbrecher to leave the residence only for work purposes.
Back when the murder charge was initially filed in December 2009 state prosecutors asked that no bond be set in the case. Instead, a judge set the bond total at $1 million, which last year was reduced to $250,000.
Nearly a year a defense motion to reduce the bond, similar to the one this week, was denied by a judge.