Murder suspect posts $50K bond, victim's family upset - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Murder suspect posts $50K bond, victim's family upset

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Murder suspect Donald Hayes was released from Metro Corrections Thursday evening after posting $50,000 full cash bond, authorities confirmed. They could not say who put up the money, but jail records show it was posted about 7 p.m.

Hayes now awaits the next court hearing in his case and a presentation to a grand jury for possible further charges.

Hayes' release came several hours after a circuit judge ruled the bond should stay at $50,000 cash. 

Testimony from a police detective in the bond hearing Thursday detailed what led to the shooting -- and a crucial 13 seconds once the suspect and the victim confronted each other.

Attorneys for Hayes, who has been accused of what police are calling a "road rage murder," have argued that a district court judge improperly increased his bond to $50,000 from $10,000 late last month. Hayes' attorneys asked that his bond be reduced to the original amount.

"Judge Haner's ruling has taken Mr. Hayes's liberty away," said Hayes' attorney. "By ignoring the rules, it is 100 percent illegal and unlawful and Mr. Hayes is entitled to the specific relief that we're requesting."

But a circuit judge disagreed, and on Thursday issued a ruling denying that request, keeping Hayes' bond where it is.

Donald Hayes is accused of fatally shooting Danny Wilson in what police called a "road rage incident" on June 21.

Also in the hearing Thursday, Louisville Metro Police detective Brian Peters testified that Hayes told officers he and Wilson got into a "pissing contest," in which they cut each other off in heavy traffic on the Watterson Expressway (I-264), near the Taylorsville Road exit.

Peters said the situation continued west until the Poplar Level Road exit, where one driver followed the other, and Wilson pulled off into a bank parking lot.

Hayes waited a few minutes, then drove up beside Wilson in the opposite direction, so their drivers' side doors were almost touching, Peters said.

Hayes told officers his driver's side window was broken and that Wilson used a baseball bat to knock it out. Peters continued to say that is not proven because Hayes could have shot out the window himself.

Hayes then picked up his .38 caliber handgun from the passenger seat and fired a single shot into Wilson's car, Peters said. The shot hit Wilson in the head. Wilson then lost control of his car, drove across the street and hit three, parked cars in a barber shop parking lot, Peters said.

Surveillance video showed Hayes' car drive away from the area. He lives less than half-a-mile from the scene. When Hayes got home, he called 911 and told a call taker he fired his gun into a car and wasn't sure if he hit anyone, Peters said.  Hayes and Wilson had never met each other, and they did not exchange any words during the entire incident, Peters said. Investigators believe Hayes drove into the parking lot, shot Wilson and left, all in a matter of 13 seconds, Peters said.

Danny Wilson's daughter Christy Wilson spoke with WDRB Friday and says she had just gotten home from court Thursday when she found out Hayes was already out of jail.

"I lost it. I just started crying," said Wilson.

She said she's been on an emotial roller coaster and is trying to keep faith in the justice system.

Hayes is expected back in court August 11.

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