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Accused killers in jail, but not indicted
John Cherry
John Cherry

A murder suspect who has been in jail for six months under a $1 million bond needs to be released or be indicted, his attorney says.

John William Cherry, 65, of Murfreesboro has been behind bars at Warren County Jail since June 7, charged with criminal homicide for the death of military veteran Dennis Carter, 51. Carter was shot and killed during a fight at Rebels Motorcycle Club at 833 Pike Hill Road on June 1.

Also charged in the murder are Kate Prichard, 27, of Franklin and Timothy Baer, 53, of Murfreesboro. None of the suspects have been indicted. Baer is the only one to have made bond.

“There’s no substantive evidence my client did anything illegal,” said Cherry’s defense attorney, Bud Sharp. “Indict my client or let him out of jail. At the very least, let him out with an ankle monitor. Keeping him in jail on a $1 million bond is a punishment. Only rich people can afford that type of bond. There’s a good chance he’s going to be found not guilty and who’s going to give him his life back?”

District Attorney General Lisa Zavogiannis said she’s waiting for ballistic results from the TBI crime lab before taking any of the three cases before the grand jury.

“I’ve asked for a rush on the TBI lab results but they haven’t come back yet,” said Zavogiannis. “There were three people involved in this. Either one of them did it, two of them did it, or all three did it.”

Sharp said he was informed during preliminary hearing that no gunshot residue tests were conducted on any of the three suspects. He said two 40-caliber handguns were recovered at the scene so he believes it will be difficult to conclude which gun was used and which person pulled the trigger.

Sharp says Cherry deserves to have a reasonable bond that he can afford. Carter was reportedly assaulting Baer when he was shot.

Cherry, Prichard and Baer are scheduled to go before the grand jury for possible indictment during its next session Jan. 10. The three have been scheduled to go before the grand jury several times before but the case has been continued.