Mom Who Fired Warning Shot Denied Release

Stephen A. Crockett Jr.
Marissa Alexander    

A Florida woman sentenced to 20 years in prison may remain in custody until her new trial date in 2014, the Florida Times-Union reports. Marissa Alexander was dealt the 20-year sentence for firing a warning shot to stop her allegedly abusive then-husband.

She was hoping to go free earlier this week at a bond hearing, which was set and then postponed until Wednesday. Alexander was thrown a curve ball, however, as Judge James Daniel postponed a decision on whether to grant bond.


If bond had been granted, she would have been a free woman, and required to return to court on her new trial date scheduled for March 31.

In her defense, Alexander's attorney's used sexual texts messages sent from her then-husband, Rico Gray, after the incident in which Alexander was told to stay away from Gray.


Bruce Zimmet, Alexander's attorney, argued that the sexual texts messages prove that Alexander poses no threat to Gray and therefore she should be set free, according to the Times-Union.

"The real problem was between Mr. Gray and Ms. Alexander," Zimet said. "That no longer exists because the relationship is totally different," the Times-Union reports.


Alexander, 33, is charged with three counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon because Gray was in the home with his two children when Alexander fired what she called a warning shot to stop abuse. Alexander has been in prison since her conviction in March 2012 and has maintained her innocence since the beginning.

Prosecutors have argued that Alexander was not firing a warning shot since the bullet hit the wall, not the ceiling, and it could have killed Gray or one of his children.


Circuit Judge James Daniel did not rule Wednesday and seemed noncommittal as to when he planned on deciding whether or not Alexander would be granted release.

"I’ll get to this as soon as I can," Daniel said. He added that he has 50 other cases on his docket to deal with, the Times-Union reports.


Read more at the Florida Times-Union.

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