08-13-2016 FAMILY

WTF! Family of Admitted Killer of His 11-Year-Old Daughter CHEER In Court After Bond Gets Reduced!

A courtroom full of Timothy Batts supporters broke out in applause after his bond was reduced from $1 Million to $500,000. Batts admitted to fatally shooting his 11-year-old daughter earlier this week. Timothy Batts' version of what led to the shooting death of his 11-year-old daughter Monday is inconsistent with surveillance video collected from Batts' Hendersonville home, a detective said. The video shows Batts walking in his home with a phone in one hand and a gun in the other minutes before his daughter, Timea Batts, enters the house, said Hendersonville police Detective Neal Harris. Batts appeared in Sumner County General Sessions Court on Friday morning, when  Judge James Hunter cut his bondfrom $1 million to $500,000. Friday's police testimony suggests Batts was untruthful to police on two occasions. The 29-year-old Hendersonville father initially told police that when Timea arrived from Knox Doss Middle School on Monday, she entered the home and yelled she had been shot. Batts later told police he had been sleeping and thought Timea was an intruder, according to his arrest affidavit. "That really bothers me," Hunter said. "I do think the $1 million is probably too high in this case. If you make that bond, you're going to be on conditions, and there will be no second chance." Batts faces charges of reckless homicide, false reporting, tampering with evidence and possessing a firearm as a felon. Batts' attorney, John Pellegrin, asked for a lower bond, citing his client's strong ties to the community, employment and family living in Sumner and Davidson counties. "We think $1 million is very, very excessive based on the factors to be considered," Pellegrin said. Batts' uncle Patrick Starnes testified in support of his nephew's character. "We know him to be a gentleman, a productive member of society," Starnes said. "We all have a past. We all make mistakes." Batts' stepfather, Jeffrey Starnes, told the judge about his stepson's increased faith in God. "He's been a very religious man in the past three, four years," Jeffrey Starnes said. "He's been very involved in the church with his family." Although family members said Batts has never failed to appear in court, Harris said the defendant has two failure to appear charges. Pellegrin and the family said Batts cut lawns and hair while attending barber school. Harris, however, testified Batts initially told police he is "not currently" working but later said he cuts lawns and has a barbershop in Nashville. This led Hunter to conclude Batts is "maybe employed." Prosecutor Katherine Walker asked Hunter to place Batts on a supervised bond with conditions. "The defendant is a convicted felon who was not permitted to have a firearm and yet he used one to shoot his daughter," Walker said. "The second version of events is also untrue. The likelihood of conviction here is high." If Batts makes bail, he has to report to an officer once a week, pass random and regular drug and alcohol tests, cannot have a firearm or pick up new charges. Should Batts violate any of the conditions, Hunter said, "I or Judge (Dee David) Gay will revoke your bond and you sit in jail until this whole case is over. That's like being on probation. You only get one shot." Hunter said he's not worried about Batts showing up for court but rather about the safety of the community, citing the defendant's three drug sale convictions. Pellegrin had requested Hunter reduce the bond to $10,000 to $25,000. "We're glad it was reduced," Pellegrin said. "We wish it was reduced more. It's still an awfully high bond." Walker said prosecutors "will hold Mr. Batts to the bond's conditions." More than 200 family and friends came to support Batts on Friday, virtually filling up the courtroom. They applauded and cheered after Hunter cut the bond. Outside court, Lafonte Gregory asked supporters to give money toward his friend's bond. Give what you can," Gregory said. "Just do the best you can." Nashville friend Fertrikia Williamson said "the victory speaks for itself." "He's a super dad and an amazing brother," Williamson said.

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