SCOTTSBORO, Ala. — Two Hearings were held in a Scottsboro courtroom on Wednesday in the cases of Christopher McCallie and Brittany Smith, the brother and sister who are accused of murdering 38-year-old Joshua Todd Smith in the early morning hours of January 16, 2018 in Stevenson.
Initially McCallie was arrested following the incident, but as the investigation continued in the days that followed investigators fingered a second suspect, 30-year-old Brittany Joyce Smith, McCallie’s sister, who also lived at the home on Sharon Drive in Stevenson where the murder happened.
At one of those hearings, the motion to reduce bond filed by Attorney Robert Ray on behalf of McCallie was made. McCallie’s mother testified that her son has lived with her throughout his life, stating that he has never been in trouble other than one juvenile case that was instigated by a dare and was later dismissed.
District Judge Don Word stated that he would get an order prepared, however he did not indicate if the motion would be granted or denied. McCallie has been held in the Jackson County Jail with a bond of $250,000 since his arrest in January.
The order released a short while later states, “The Defendants motion to reduce bond is granted. The defendants bond shall be reduced to $50,000.”
“As an additional condition of the defendant being released from jail on bond in this case the defendant shall report to the Jackson County Court Community Corrections Office monthly and comply with all directives of the Jackson County CCO pending further Order of the Court. The defendant shall not leave Jackson County without permission from the Court or the Jackson County CCO,” the order continued.
Prior to McCallie’s hearing, a hearing was held on the state’s motion to remove an appointed counsel due to conflict of interests in the Brittany Smith case after defense counsel Parker Edmiston visited the Jackson County Jail, stating he was there to see a client and was permitted to visit with Christopher McCallie.
It’s alleged that following that, Edmiston appeared with Brittany Smith at the Jackson County Sheriff’s office where she then gave a statement to investigators and confessed to the murder of Todd Smith. Edmiston later visited McCallie in the Jackson County Jail a second time following this.
District Attorney Jason Pierce argued that the State would anticipate McCallie would testify against Smith and it would be inappropriate for Edmiston to cross-examine McCallie. Edmiston argued that both defendants in the cases would have to right to waive any conflict that might present itself, explaining that he had in fact visited McCallie and transported Smith to the Jackson County Sheriff’s office after receiving a request from the defendants mother.
Edmiston also argued that information given to him by McCallie is not privileged due to being obtainable elsewhere, such as in his written statement, further arguing that he is not a necessary witness to the case.
Judge Word continued the Preliminary hearings of both parties and is expected to review the statements given by both defendants prior to issuing an order regarding the removal of appointed counsel.