A judge ordered a $20 million bond Thursday for a former fugitive who sat shackled as he pleaded innocent to charges he shot at and tried to kill Ohio police officers.
Sheriff’s deputies ringed the atrium of the three-story Clinton County Courthouse as Chevie Kehoe, 24, was brought in for arraignment. Common Pleas Judge William McCracken set a Sept. 22 trial date for Kehoe, flown in from Utah Thursday.
He was captured last month after a national search.
Kehoe said nothing as he was led by a dozen deputies to court, but winked twice at reporters watching him.
Kehoe and his brother Cheyne Kehoe, 21, formerly of Colville, Wash., are accused of participating in two shootouts with police officers after a Feb. 15 traffic stop near Wilmington.
The Clinton County indictment returned Feb. 20 accuses both brothers of attempted murder of a police officer, felonious assault and carrying a concealed weapon. Chevie Kehoe also is charged with possession of criminal tools, improper transportation of a firearm and fleeing.
No officer was injured.
Cheyne Kehoe surrendered to authorities in Washington state last month. He remains in custody there and plans to fight extradition to Ohio, his lawyer said.
Officers said Chevie Kehoe was the driver and his brother was riding with him in a blue Chevrolet Suburban that police stopped along Ohio 73 because the vehicle had expired Washington state license plates.
Chevie Kehoe resisted a patdown search, fled to his vehicle and was pursued by a state trooper and a Clinton County deputy sheriff, the patrol said. As he got into the Suburban and drove away, passenger Cheyne Kehoe fired several rounds at the officers with a semiautomatic handgun and fled on foot, the patrol said.
A Wilmington police officer found the vehicle shortly afterward and was fired on by Chevie Kehoe, the patrol said.
The Kehoe brothers have been reported to share interests in firearms, survivalist activities and antigovernment and militia philosophies.
Chevie Kehoe waived a reading of the indictment Thursday.
Rick Moyer, an assistant county prosecutor, said he expects the trial to take three to five days. Kehoe faces 35 to 40 years in prison if convicted, Moyer said.
The prosecutor said he was prevented by Ohio law from asking for no bond, which he said is an option only in aggravated murder cases.
David Bodiker, Ohio’s public defender, and assistant Jerry McHenry accompanied Kehoe in court. The judge appointed them to represent Kehoe at trial after they said Kehoe had no job and no money.
Bodiker declined to challenge the bond amount.
“We realize there are severe aggravating circumstances,” Bodiker told the judge.
Moyer said the state expects to call about 10 witnesses. A video camera in a state trooper’s patrol car filmed the first Feb. 15 shootout, but Moyer declined to say that will make the prosecution easier.
“I learned a long time ago not to try to predict how hard or how easy a case will be,” Moyer said.
MEMO: This sidebar appeared with the story: THE INDICTMENT The Clinton County indictment returned Feb. 20 accuses brothers Cheyne and Chevie Kehoe of attempted murder of a police officer, felonious assault and carrying a concealed weapon. Chevie Kehoe also is charged with possession of criminal tools, improper transportation of a firearm and fleeing.
Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter
Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.