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Bond reduction granted in pregnant woman's slaying

Becky Campbell • Dec 8, 2018 at 12:00 AM

One of four men charged with killing a pregnant woman while she sat in her car with her other child in the back seat was granted a bond reduction after a hearing in Washington County Criminal Court on Friday.

Avios Griffin, 24, of Johnson City, was given a $300,000 bond — lowered from the original $500,000 — after defense attorney Russell Kloosterman established sufficient grounds for the reduction.

Griffin faces charges of first-degree murder and first-degree murder in commission of a felony in the July 24, 2017, shooting death of Stacy Magee, also known by her adopted name of Rebekah Thompson. The 22-year-old was seven weeks pregnant when she was shot at point-blank range while sitting in her car outside a Johnson City housing development residence.

There were several eyewitnesses to the killing, but no one could give Johnson City Police investigators a clear description of the shooter.

It took police 10 months to track down all four charged in the case.

Aside from Griffin, the other men charged were:

• Isiaha Devon Milligan, 24, of Johnson City — charged with first-degree murder, first-degree murder in commission of a felony and two counts of solicitation of first-degree murder, represented by Chris Byrd;

• Monte Brewer Jr., 27, of Cleveland, Tennessee — charged with first-degree murder and first-degree murder in commission of a felony, represented by Ryan Curtis; and

• Eugene Glover, 31, of Chattanooga — charged with first-degree murder and first-degree murder in commission of a felony, represented by Patrick Denton.

All four were scheduled to appear Friday before Judge Stacy Street, but Brewer is in federal custody on drug charges. His case will likely be delayed due to the process to get federal inmates into state court.

Glover’s attorney had also filed a motion for bond reduction, but was unable to convince Street there was sufficient proof to lower his bond.

In Griffin’s case, he lived in Johnson City before his arrest and apparently had moved there to train as a boxer. Two character witnesses and his mother, who lives in Chattanooga, testified on his behalf.

Robert Hall and Scott Vance testified they knew Griffin through the boxing world and he had always had a strong work ethic.

“He works with the kids in the community,” Vance said. “He does real well and he’s a great coach, too. Avios is a good-hearted person. He’s a great guy, a good kid.”

Assistant District Attorney Erin McArdle argued against the bond reduction motions, but on Griffin’s case she said he was the defendant with the least amount of evidence that he was connected to the murder.

Street reset all three cases to Feb. 19 for a status hearing.

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