Johnston Taylor, the 17-year-old arrested in connection with the deaths of Rod and Paula Bramblett, had his bond reinstated on Wednesday.
Judge Jacob Walker signed the order, which now allows Taylor to be in home detention as long as he adheres to several guidelines outlined in the order.
“Johnston Taylor’s bond is being reinstated upon release from where he is currently undergoing treatment,” said Lee County District Attorney Brandon Hughes in an email to The Plainsman. “Due to Covid-19, caution is being taken introducing new people into the Lee County Jail. As such, I took steps to enact strict bond conditions for the safety of the community and those strict guidelines are included in the court's order.”
Taylor’s bond was revoked in December after the teenager received several traffic citations for speeding and reckless driving.
Taylor was indicted by a Lee County grand jury on two counts of reckless manslaughter on Jan. 16.
Rod and Paula Bramblett died on May 25, 2019, in a crash involving Taylor. Investigators stated then that Taylor was driving at around 90 mph and had THC in his system. An affidavit previously obtained by The Plainsman states Taylor did not brake before the crash, and the traffic-crash report states he told officers he fell asleep at the wheel.
The crash occurred at the intersection on Shug Jordan Parkway near West Samford Avenue, where the speed limit is 55 mph.
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After Lee County Judge Russell Bush revoked Taylor’s bond in December, the teenager was transferred from the Lee County Detention Center to a rehab facility.
Tommy Spina, Taylor's attorney, said in December that he thought the judge's decision was "fair and balanced and appropriate under all circumstances."
In the courtroom, Spina asked the judge that Taylor be allowed to "address these issues professionally with professionals outside of the county jail."
The new order signed on Wednesday states Taylor must wear an ankle monitor as he stays in the residence of Joy Johnston, and he must be under quarantine for 14 days because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The order also requires Taylor to call a drug-testing center every day and see if he is to be tested. He can’t use any form of social media, and he must continue his mental health and drug therapy, which includes Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, according to the order.
Taylor is forbidden from driving anywhere, and his license remains in the possession of Hughes, according to the order. He is required by the order to provide dates, time and places before he leaves to meet with lawyers and medical professionals or to attend AA meetings.
Taylor is not allowed to have any visitors at his home, according to the order.
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