WARSAW — An attempt by Austin Michael Parks, 18, South Union Street, Warsaw, to have his $10,250 surety and cash bond reduced, backfired Wednesday in Kosciusko Superior Court III. He is now being held on $30,250 surety and cash bond.
Parks, who has resided at several other locations including four years in Syracuse, was arrested June 17 on a charge of intimidation and has remained in jail since that time. At the request of his attorney a bond reduction hearing was heard by Judge Joe Sutton.
Alexander Echeverria presented to the court his client was no danger to the community, would show up for court and he shouldn’t be punished because “he can’t pay bail.” The state argued differently.
Christanne Hampton, deputy prosecuting attorney, argued the evidence of his past criminal history showed he graduated from dealing and possession of marijuana to possession of methamphetamine and when he was angry about something that happened in the drive-thru, he called and threatened bodily harm to those at Penguin Point.
“He has no stability,” Hampton said, noting his numerous addresses and said he is a threat to the community with his methamphetamine involvement and operating a vehicle without a license.
Sutton agreed with the prosecution Parks was a danger to the community and there is no guarantee of his appearance in court. Sutton noted his past conviction and history of drugs and drug use. “I don’t want to take the risk,” he said adding there appeared to be instability in the things said in court.
Prior to the judge increasing the bond, Echeverria called his client to the stand. He asked Parks to provide the court his current address and other locations he had resided at. Parks noted he had resided in Syracuse “when he was younger” and attended Wawasee Middle School. Parks told the court he and his girlfriend, along with his mother and three siblings all resided at the Union Street address and he was the only one working. “I take care of the whole family,” adding he was the sole provider. He also stated he had a job waiting for him.
However, under questioning by Hampton, more to Parks’ life was revealed. Under questioning by Hampton, Parks could not provide who told him his job would be available or the last names of his supervisors at LSC Communications, a job he had had since October until the time of his arrest. “They pretty much all said they would take me back,” he responded.
Hampton entered into evidence Parks juvenile delinquency record, where in 2013 he was adjudicated in a charge of dealing marijuana, given probation for four years with an unsuccessful completion; his arrest May 1 on charges of possession of methamphetamine and possession of paraphernalia; the charges of intimidation which occurred later in May; and charges of possession of methamphetamine and possession of paraphernalia June 17, on the property owned by LSC Communications. A citation for a learner’s permit violation was also noted.
Even Parks girlfriend, Brooklyn Hughes, 18, who took the stand to testify to Parks responsibilities to those living at his address, the prosecution pointed out Hughes’ juvenile record. Hughes, when asked what the controlled substance was she was found in possession with, couldn’t tell the court, stating it happened when she was 16-17.