INDIANAPOLIS – A man accused of a controversial murder in downtown Indianapolis is given a bond and allowed to go home before his trial.
During a court hearing Monday morning, the defense and prosecutor agreed on a deal that allowed Tyler Newby to post a $250,000 bond.
The decision allows the suspect to post 10 percent of the bond, or $25,000 in cash.
Walking to court, Tyler Newby stayed quiet as a deal was worked out behind closed doors to allow the 30-year-old murder suspect to be released on bond.
The victim’s family then stormed out of court angry at what they believe is preferential treatment because he, the suspect, is white.
“I’ve seen so many cases where people murder people and they don’t get a bond. I don’t understand this. My son is gone and he’s never coming back,” said the victim’s mother Shavon Mathis.
Newby previously admitted to shooting and killing Shavon’s 18-year-old son Dorian Murrell near Penn and Market during a violent night of rioting in downtown.
Newby’s lawyer has filed court documents claiming the shooting was self-defense, but Murrell’s family believes the decision to grant Newby bond is racially motivated.
“This is all about color. It’s all about color because if that was my grandson sitting on trial, he wouldn’t have got out,” said Murrell’s grandmother Artonia Armstrong.
“If my son would have done that my son would have gone nowhere. He would have sat here with no bond. So I don’t understand this. I don’t understand Indiana. I don’t see how this is fair,” said Mathis.
According to court records, Newby told police he was pushed to the ground, saw Murrell standing over him and was afraid he was going to be punched, so he shot Murrell one time allegedly in self-defense.
Newby has been in jail since the end of May.
“This should have happened a long time ago,” said Newby’s father as he walked out of court.
Newby’s family expressed relief in the judge’s decision. In Indiana murder suspects are not entitled to bond, but they can make a request to a judge.
“It’s more and more common now for defendants to file these petitions with the court because the Supreme Court has offered some clarity as to what the showing must be,” said attorney Ralph Staples.
Attorney Staples isn’t connected to the case, but says the burden is on the state to prove the suspect committed the murder and shouldn’t be given a bond.
Prosecutors decided not to present any evidence in court against Newby, paving the way for his bond which Staples described as rare in a murder case but not unheard of.
Newby will have to wear a GPS ankle and live at his parent’s home until his criminal trial gets underway.
A spokesman with the prosecutor’s office offered a written statement that read:
“We knew when we filed the Murder charge that this would be a challenging case. Nevertheless, we pursued the charge and, in doing so, made clear our intent to seek justice for Dorian Murrell. While this latest development is adverse-it is not the end of case.”