MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — A Mobile County Judge granted the state’s request for no bond on a murder charge for a man accused of shooting and killing 24-year-old Jatarious Reives and injuring others in the New Year’s Eve shooting on Dauphin Street in downtown Mobile under Aniah’s Law.
Thomas Earl Thomas Jr., 22, was charged with murder, first-degree assault, shooting into an occupied building, and shooting into an unoccupied building. He was held without bond on Jan. 6 pending a hearing on Aniah’s Law.
Thomas will be held without bond until trial. The judge did grant the state’s request for bonds in his other charges of assault and shooting into an occupied and unoccupied building, setting them at a total of $150,000.
Thomas was in the courtroom Thursday, still wearing a neck brace we saw him in when he was escorted to Mobile County Metro Jail last week.
Thomas’ lawyer claims the shooting was in self-defense. Thomas’ lawyer claims Reives got a gun and told Thomas he would shoot him.
According to testimony from a Mobile police detective, Thomas’ gun was fired 16 times. Another man, who has not been identified, fired back six times. Thomas was hit in the arm, chest, and back.
Reives was shot in the back of his head, his arms, and his leg.
The judge was shown surveillance video of that night and the brief altercation between Thomas and Reives.
The detective testified to the courtroom three guns were recovered. He told the court one gun was found inside Reives’ waistband. The detective said the other two guns belonged to Thomas and the man who police have not identified.
The detective testified there is no evidence Reives fired a shot.
The courtroom was packed with family and friends for Thomas, and the family of Reives.
Officers from the Mobile Police Department, including Chief Paul Prine, were present to hear arguments, as was Public Safety Director Lawrence Battiste.
Aniah’s Law allows judges to deny bond to violent crime offenders in an effort to keep them off the streets and prevent them from committing other crimes.
The case will be bound to a grand jury. There are no additional details in reference to when the trial will be.