PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A man accused of abducting his biological daughter from UPMC Children’s Hospital last month during a custody dispute with the child’s mother, will stand trial on those charges.
But after today’s hearing he’s eligible to get out of jail because his high bond was set based on a spelling error within the criminal justice system, according to his lawyer.
Jacquae Barnett’s bond was set at $200,000 after police said he abducted his daughter and assaulted her mother during an incident at Children’s when the child was brought there for treatment.
It was set so high based on the belief that Barnett had been convicted of domestic violence as recently as last summer.
But his lawyer convinced District Judge Kevin Cooper that the original judge had been given background information on a defendant who is not his client.
“My client had not been convicted of domestic violence against this particular victim in July of 2013 but that in fact someone else with a different spelling of their first name, Jacquae, a little different spelling had been so convicted,” said defense attorney Milton Raiford.
“So that’s why the magistrate, whoever did the pre trial work that the magistrate had to rely on, didn’t do it accurately and therefore my client has been held in jail based on a two hundred thousand dollar bond based on an allegation that he was not involved in.”
Judge Cooper maintained the $200,000 bond but reduced it to “unsecured” which does not require cash payment in lieu of showing up for trial.
The little girl’s mother expressed concern to the judge about Barnett’s actions but the issues surrounding custody will be handled at a future hearing.
The defense waived the charges to court.