Home Nonviolent defense Man charged with arson, accused of burning down two houses near River Road

Man charged with arson, accused of burning down two houses near River Road

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) – Clean-shaven, dressed and seemingly calm and lucid, Adam Baxter made a radically different impression in court on Wednesday than when he was arrested a week earlier, naked and wrapped in a blanket after a night of destruction.

“Even in conversations I’ve had with him before, he seems lucid and alert,” defense attorney Mike Burns said. “I don’t know his whole story. But there was definitely something going on the day all of this happened.

Baxter is accused of deliberately burning down two homes Tuesday night, June 7, in eastern Jefferson County near River Road.

Burns said Baxter had no memory of what he was doing the night the owners say he was roaming the area in his underwear, stealing and causing damage.

Baxter, who had no criminal history, was released Wednesday on $50,000 bail with assurances that he would continue treatment for undisclosed mental health issues.

“If he gets the help he needs, I think that’s good,” Burns said. “Before that, he has hardly any background. So I guess the big question is what happened to make this happen? »

There are also lingering questions about how Baxter was initially released on his own recognizance hours after his arrest.

He was released from police custody when he was administratively released by the Department of Pre-Trial Services.

According to the Kentucky Court of Justice website, a state Supreme Court order “gives pretrial officers the power to release based on specific criteria without contacting a judge. The program is designed to expedite the bail of low to moderate risk defendants charged with non-violent, non-sex crimes.

Baxter has been assessed by a pre-trial expert as “at low to moderate risk of both non-appearance and further criminal activity,” according to an email from Leigh Anne Hiatt, public information officer for the Courts Administration Office.

Hiatt also said that “if Mr. Baxter had (originally) been charged with a more serious or violent charge, such as arson, he would not have been allowed to be released.”

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