Michael Slager released from custody after posting bond

Michael Slager released from custody after posting bond
Michael Slager in court. (Source: Live 5)
Michael Slager in court. (Source: Live 5)
Walter Scott. (Source: Facebook)
Walter Scott. (Source: Facebook)

NORTH CHARLESTON (WCSC) - Officials with the Charleston County Sheriff's Office say the former North Charleston police officer accused of murdering Walter Scott has been released from custody.

CCSO officials say Slager was released at 7 p.m. on Monday after posting bond.

Authorities say Slager was released from the Charleston County Courthouse.

Earlier in the afternoon, Judge Clifton Newman set bond at $500,000, which meant Slager would have to pay $50,000 to get out of jail.

Newman said he took into consideration the length of time Slager would have had to wait in jail for a fall trial.

Before the judge set bond, Walter Scott's father addressed the judge and mentioned the cell phone video which captured the shooting.

"Looking at the film that I saw, every time I look at it, it makes me cry," said Walter Scott's father, Walter Scott, Sr."When I go down to the graveyard, the only thing I see there is a pot sticking in the ground with flowers in it...If you let him out, he's gonna go home and look at his wife and children."

Newman also set Slager's trial date for Oct. 31.

While disappointed with the bond, lawyers for Walter Scott's family asked for peace.

"Just be peaceful, like we have been," said Justin Bamberg."Know at the end of the day, justice will run its course. I believe in the legal system, and the Scott family believes in it."

The National Action Network will be holding a press conference Tuesday morning outside the jail in response to Slager's release.

Earlier on Monday, the jail's site indicated bail had been posted as of approximately 5:23 p.m., but at 5:53 p.m., the Charleston County Sheriff's Office denied that via a post on Twitter, stating Slager was still in their custody. A spokesman for the sheriff's office said late Monday a jail employee mistakenly posted that Slager had bonded out of jail. CCSO officials later tweeted that Slager was released at 7 p.m.

Slager's attorneys had requested a speedy trial, but Ninth Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson filed a 10-page response to that motion, saying a date in the fall would be both reasonable and necessary because she is also working on the case against Dylann Roof, the suspect in the June shooting deaths of nine parishioners at Mother Emanuel AME Church.

Wilson told the court she felt the trial should be held in November at the earliest.

A judge denied bond for Slager in September, stating the court found the release of the defendant would cause an unreasonable danger to the community. But his attorneys requested last month that bond be reconsidered. In setting bond Monday,

Slager is charged in the April 4 shooting death of Walter Scott.

Newman ordered Slager to remain under house arrest if he posted bail and to have no contact with Scott's family.

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