The death of a Columbus Ohio man on Jan. 7 might have been prevented had the accused suspect, 27-year-old Robert Pouncey Jr., also of Columbus, not been released on bond while awaiting trial on other felony offenses. Laecinneo D. Bradford, 20, was allegedly shot in the chest by Pouncey outside a United Dairy Farmers Store located at 4374 E. Broad St.
After the shooting, a friend of Bradford’s drove him to a Speedway Gas Station several blocks away at 4981 E. Main St. to seek help for the wounded Bradford. Medics responded and took Bradford to Grant Medical Center where he later died. According to the Columbus Dispatch, police later saw Pouncey in the area close to where the shooting took place. He was taken into custody nearby.
At the time of Bradford’s death, Pouncey was already awaiting trial on felony drug charges, related to the seizure of more than $6,000 in cash and possession of 18.5 grams cocaine. Records show he was released on $5000 recognizance bond and had a trial date scheduled for Jan. 14. In Ohio, possession of more than 10 grams but less than 20 grams cocaine is a felony of the third degree with the presumption of a prison sentence if the suspect is convicted, as provided under Title 2925.11 Section C (4) ( C) of the Ohio Revised Code. A third degree felony conviction in Ohio is punishable by up to three years in prison.
But this was not Pouncey’s first offense; his record for felony convictions ranging from drugs to possession of guns dates back to 2004. The Dispatch indicated that he was also awaiting trial on charges of assaulting a Columbus police officer.
Pouncey is charged with aggravated murder in case number 2013 CR A 000532 in the shooting death of Laecinneo Bradford, which may have been drug-related. He is also charged with having a weapon under disability, which means he was under parole or probation supervision at the time of the shooting. A person on parole or probation is not permitted to own or possess a weapon.
Had Robert Pouncey been given a larger bond while awaiting trial on the felony charges he was already facing, especially given his lengthy criminal history and non-compliance of the conditions of supervision on other cases, perhaps he would not have been in the community to kill Bradford. While an individual is protected from having unreasonable bail, Pouncey’s criminal history and new charges related to felony drug possession and allegedly assaulting a police officer may have warranted more than the bond he was given. Perhaps then 20-year-old Laecinneo Bradford would still be alive.