A young woman accused in May of stabbing three others must remain at the Sumter-Lee Regional Detention Center with a surety bond of $200,000.
At-large Circuit Judge D. Craig Brown denied a reconsideration of that bond for Octavia Kennedy, 18, of Sumter. He said her attorney, Sumter Assistant Public Defender Tiffany Butler, can petition the court again after getting discovery materials from the state.
Kennedy was charged May 29 with three counts of attempted murder after Sumter County sheriff's deputies spoke with three women at Tuomey Regional Medical Center. The suspect, the victims told deputies, stabbed all three women after an argument broke out while the four were gathered at a home in the first block of Ruth Street.According to reports, the argument was between Kennedy and a resident of the home about the presence of one of the other women at the house.
"The suspect pulled out what the victims called an 'unknown object' and stabbed the first woman (and second woman) in (their stomachs)," 3rd Circuit Assistant Solicitor Bronwyn K. McElveen told Brown. The third victim was treated for a punctured lung after being stabbed in the chest.
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Two of the victims were present at the hearing but declined to speak. A deputy told Brown that the third victim, who had to have her gallbladder removed after the incident, remains in much pain.Butler told Brown that she anticipates arguing self-defense when Kennedy proceeds to trial."My understanding, from talking with my client, is that there were a group of people there," Butler said. "And we will be anticipating a self-defense type argument. But I have not received discovery yet."Brown said he would not reconsider Kennedy's bond unless circumstances had changed since a magistrate set her bond shortly after her arrest."Simply believing the bond to be high is not a significant change enough in circumstances ... for me to consider changing that bond," Brown said. "She would be stuck with a ruling if I ruled today on this. I am going to deny at this time, but file (a) discovery (motion) on the state, and they have 30 days to get it for you, and then if there's a change in circumstances, you can proceed."