Man at center of bond dispute after being released on $500 bond arrested again, police say

HOUSTON – A man at the center of a bond dispute was arrested again, according to the Houston Police Department.

What happened?

Timothy Singleton, 31, was arrested by Houston police after he was found hiding in a southwest Houston apartment. Singleton is facing charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, burglary and now misdemeanor evading arrest.

“He made eye contact directly with one of the officers who yelled, ‘stop, police,’ and the defendant immediately ran inside unit 1728 and locked the door,” a prosecutor told a magistrate during a probable cause hearing.

“It’s like groundhog day around here with our officers chasing the same violent and repeat offenders time and again thanks to the activists’ judges who have turned our criminal justice system into a revolving door and made a mockery of our system by giving low or personal bonds,” HPD Chief Art Acevedo told Channel 2 Investigates.

What happened before Friday’s arrest?

We are sure he did not plan for this, but Singleton took center stage in the protracted legal debate over bond in Harris County. Singleton was charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in March. Court records show Singleton already had prior convictions for assaulting a family member, robbery, credit card abuse, delivery of a controlled substance and failing to show up for court appearances.

The District Attorney’s office asked for a $50,000 bond. However, a magistrate gave Singleton a $500 bond. Court records read the magistrate was concerned about the COVID-19 virus in the jail.

“It becomes very problematic to arbitrarily say that anyone who has a prior conviction for violence or a prior conviction for threat of violence, or is currently charged with violence or threat of violence can’t get a personal bond. So you are just trying to fill the jail up which is the exact opposite of what should be happening right now,” Hearing Officer Jennifer Gaut said during a probable cause hearing.

Officials with the DA’s Office said they then asked the judge presiding over Singleton’s case, Judge Chris Morton, to increase his bond but were denied.

The DA’s Office then took the unusual step of appealing the judge’s decision to the Court of Criminal Appeals. The Justices sided with the DA’s Office, ordered Singleton to be given a $100,000 and issued a new warrant for his arrest.

Prosecutors told KPRC 2 that it is something that has not happened in this state since 1921.

“I think it should have been obvious from the get-go that this guy was the proverbial red flag,” said KPRC 2 legal analyst Brian Wice. “It’s simple, we don’t throw out the constitution in times of crisis or pandemic.”

What’s next?

Prosecutors are now asking for Singleton to be held without bond. When asking for no bond prosecutors shared with the judge what Singleton said to officers following his arrest.

“The defendant said he wasn’t worried about the $100,000 bond on the aggravated assault case because he would be able to handle that easily and would be out and about again,” a prosecutor said during a probable cause hearing.

The prosecutor also told the judge how Singleton answered when asked what happened to the ankle monitor he was ordered to wear when he was released on bond.

“The defendant claimed that he jumped a fence and it ripped off and he just left it,” the prosecutor said.

A magistrate said the trial court judge presiding over the felony cases will hold a hearing Monday to decide whether Singleton will be held in jail on no bond.

“Enough is enough,” said Andy Kahan, with Houston Crimestoppers. “As much as Singleton deserves his fair share of the blame, I actually blame the system more because we continue to punt him out to do what he does best and that’s committed more crimes.”