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Defense files new motion to reduce Giles bond ahead of reset trial

Will be heard before Judge Greg Beard on July 26 in Rapides Parish Courthouse
Source: RPSO
Source: RPSO(KALB)
Published: Jul. 6, 2021 at 2:51 PM CDT
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - The defense attorney for Kayla Giles has filed two motions in her case ahead of her rescheduled trial date now set for Jan. 18, 2022.

On Friday, George Higgins filed a new motion to reduce Giles’ $2 million bond and a motion to dismiss a contempt of court she received for an Oct. 19, 2020 arrest on charges out of East Baton Rouge Parish.

Giles is awaiting trial for the Sept. 2018 shooting death of her estranged husband, Thomas Coutee, Jr., in an Alexandria Walmart parking lot. She’s charged with second degree murder and obstruction of justice.

On Oct. 19, 2020, the Louisiana Bureau of Investigation obtained an arrest warrant for Giles in East Baton Rouge Parish for charges of identify theft, government benefits fraud, criminal conspiracy, and money laundering. As a result of the arrest, a hearing was held in Rapides Parish in which Judge Greg Beard ruled that Giles “violated the conditions of her bond,” although Higgins maintains “scant evidence was presented by the government” as to the new arrest.

Giles had been out on a previously reduced bond of $510,000 during the time of the new arrest. Judge Beard increased it to $2 million and she remains behind bars in Rapides Parish. An arraignment date for the charges in East Baton Rouge Parish is scheduled for July 19, 2021.

Three days before Giles’ trial in Rapides Parish was to start in May 2021, the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office, which is prosecuting the case, notified Higgins of potential new evidence - “specifically 700,000 pages of new discovery.” Because of the time constraints to review it all, the trial was reset for Jan. 18, 2022.

Higgins believes that Giles’ rights have been violated.

Higgins said the “untimely discovery” now causes Giles “to not be able to effectively defend herself.” He also believes the charges in East Baton Rouge Parish, which he said is an “unauthenticated allegation made by the same office which was dilatory and tardy,” keeps Giles “under lock and key.”

A hearing is set for July 26.

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