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Judge denies bond reduction for 1 of 2 men charged in Jax Beach shooting

Jose Lebron accused of driving car used in deadly shooting June 24

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A Duval County judge on Friday denied a request to reduce the bond for one of two men charged in connection with the June shooting death of 23-year-old Leon Bennett.

Jose Lebron, 29, is charged with evidence tampering. He is accused of driving the vehicle used in the shooting that happened about 2:30 a.m. June 24 after a fight outside Jacksonville Beach bars.

Shaquille Walker, 25, is behind bars on the same charge, as well as a charge of carrying a concealed firearm. Documents claim Walker was the triggerman in the attack. 

Family members of Bennett, a father of two, were in the courtroom Friday afternoon when Lebron asked for a reduced bond so he could get out of jail with an ankle monitor as he waits for his trial. 

The judge ultimately struck down the request from the defense team to reduce Lebron's $75,000 bond.

Defense attorney Julie Schlax said that Lebron had family members in town, that he held a steady job and was not at risk of running away before his trial.

But the assistant state attorney on the case said he did not believe that, because Lebron and Walker drove down to Volusia County, left the vehicle that was used in the crime there and then caught a flight to Honolulu, Hawaii. They only turned themselves in to police in Honolulu after arrest warrants were issued.

"I don’t feel like bond should be reduced. In my eyes, you took a car into a whole other county, you dumped a car off and you flew to Honolulu. You’re a flight risk. I don’t have my son and I don’t feel like you should walk free," said Rhonda Kelly, Bennett's mother. "We know that they left because they did what they did. It's a fine time to take a vacation if you ask me."

Lebron‘s family members and his attorney said they did not have any comment about what happened in court. 

Lebron and Walker, who remain in the Duval County jail, will be back in court for their arraignment, scheduled for Aug. 29.


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