CLEARWATER, Fla. – A judge has refused to lower the bond for Michael Drejka, who is charged with manslaughter in the July 19 shooting death of Markeis McGlockton outside the Circle A convenience store in Clearwater.
The attorneys for Drejka, 48, had filed a motion to reduce his bond to $25,000. But, Judge Joseph Bulone ruled $100,000 was a reasonable bond considering the facts of the case.
One of Drejka's three lawyers, John Trevena, said his client could be sitting in jail for a while. So far, he has been unable to make bond on his own and a crowd-sourcing effort didn't work.
“Anything significant, he will simply not be able to make,” Trevena told the court.
Drejka’ s attorneys unsuccessfully tried to convince Judge Bulone that the 48-year-old is not a threat or a flight risk. They cited Pinellas Sheriff Bob Gualtieri’s press conference where he declined to arrest Drejka.
“I noticed they didn’t mention the violent shove that the alleged victim did to Mr. Drejka just prior to the shooting,” said Trevena, referring to the State Attorney’s opposition.
Prosecutors said Sheriff Gulatieri had made those statements before he had all the facts.
They again showed the court video taken outside the convenience store where Drejka shot Markeis McGlockton. And, they shared autopsy photos they say show McGlockton was retreating.
They cited at least four previous incidents when Drejka had lost his temper and pulled a gun -- or threatened to.
“And why is that incident important? Because it shows that he is a danger,” said Assistant State Attorney Fred Schaub. “He is a danger to himself. He is in danger to the community.”
Drejka’s lawyers suggested he would also give up any weapons and wear an ankle monitor.
But, Judge Bulone didn't go for it.
Outside the courthouse, an attorney speaking for Markeis McGlockton’s family said they were grateful Drejka’s bond was not reduced.
“It sends a message that you cannot just kill people,” said attorney Michele Rayner. “You cannot just do what you want to do. You cannot be a vigilante. You cannot be wannabe cop.”
Before adjourning, Drejka waived his right to a speedy trial. He also assured the court he was still okay with his lawyers despite comments they’d recently made on the radio social media about his case.
Drejka’s next court hearing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. on Oct. 19.
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