Judge sets bond with conditions for former American Idol contestant Caleb Kennedy on felony DUI

·2 min read

After being denied four previous times, former American Idol contestant Caleb Kennedy of Roebuck was granted bond on Friday following a fatal DUI crash in February.

Circuit Court Judge J. Derham Cole set bond at $50,000 with home detention for Kennedy, who is charged with felony DUI resulting in death in the Feb. 8 crash that killed 54-year-old boat repairman Larry Duane Parris of Pacolet in his driveway.

Kennedy, 17, was also ordered to have mental health treatment outside of jail while on home detention, according to Judge Cole's order.

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If convicted, he faces up to 25 years in prison and a fine of up to $25,100.

Kennedy's attorney, Ryan Beasley of Greenville, said his is "very relieved Caleb got a bond" after several previous unsuccessful attempts.

"Should have never taken this long," Beasley said Friday afternoon. "We look forward to providing this was a terrible accident caused by his medication. Our prayers go out to the Parris family."

Seventh Court Solicitor Barry Barnette declined to comment in an email reply to the Herald-Journal.

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"The family has no comment at this time." said Kimberly Cockrell, victim services manager for the South Carolina chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

On April 29, 7th Circuit Court Judge Grace Gilchrist Knie denied bond for Kennedy, saying he "presents a danger to both himself and to the community if released from pre-trial detention."

Judge Knie said bond could again be considered following a psychiatric evaluation to be performed within 45 days.

In his ruling Friday, Judge Cole stated that Kennedy "has submitted to such an evaluation conducted by a highly regarded forensic psychiatrist who has opined that the defendant 'does not have antisocial features' and 'is not an acute danger to himself or others.'"

In his order, Judge Cole said due to Kennedy's "character ... family ties ... length of residence in the community, lack of prior criminal history and no record of being a flight risk," Kennedy should be granted a bond with certain conditions.

The conditions include:

► Not leaving the state.

► Home detention with GPS monitoring.

► Placed in the custody of his mother in Roebuck.

► No contact with any of the victim's family.

► No consumption of alcohol or "any other mind-altering drug/substance unless prescribed and monitored by a licensed medical professional.

► Receiving inpatient and follow-up outpatient treatment for mental health and/or substance abuse issues.

This is a developing story. Check back for more information.

This article originally appeared on Herald-Journal: Judge sets bond for former American Idol contestant Caleb Kennedy