Defense Attorney Wants Bond For Pastor Facing Sex Charges
Christopher Smith Charged With Aggravated Child Molestation, Sodomy
Criminal Defense Attorney Mike Garner knew there was nothing to gain from having salacious details about this case made public so he quickly shut down the media circus in court.
Garner declined to parade his client in front of the cameras one more time and stopped Chris Smith just before he entered the courtroom for a probable cause heraing.
Smith’s defense attorney told Judge Julius Hunter he wanted to waive the hearing without testimony knowing full well a Recorder’s Court judge couldn’t set bond due to the serious nature of the charges.
But our cameras caught up with the suspect Monday when he appeared solo in court.
Mike Garner was retained last year by the South Columbus preacher when he was initially charged with eight felonies but never saw him again until he was taken into custody after an hours long standoff with law enforcement in East Columbus last Friday.
The now former pastor faces 30 years to life if convicted of sodomy and aggravated child molestation.
The victim reportedly knew the suspect’s wife and may have been how the minor came into contact with Smith.
It is unclear if the victim was a member of his church on Cusseta Road.
A Superior Court Judge will be assigned the case. The defense attorney’s next step will be a motion for bond which he intends to seek at the next hearing.