This story comes to us courtesy of our sister station – WKRN.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Cory Batey and Brandon Vandenburg were released from custody Wednesday after bond was set earlier in the day following a judge’s decision to declare a mistrial in the high-profile Vanderbilt University rape case Tuesday.
The judge reinstated Batey’s previous bond of $350,000. He now has to wear a GPS device.
Vandenburg’s bond was increased by $50,000 to $400,000, and he must also wear a GPS device that is to be placed within 15 days of his return to California, where he’s originally from.
Batey was dressed in a suit and tie and carrying a Bible as he was released. He is said to have returned to his mother’s Nashville home.
His lawyer, Worrick Robinson, spoke to the media on his client’s behalf. He stated:
“He’s not going to say anything. I think the only thing he would want to share at all would be that he’s very thankful at this point and just feels very blessed. He’s going to continue to do whatever the judge asks him to do as far as bail and bond restrictions. We are just going to move forward with preparing for the case.”
Vandenburg was released seconds after his former teammate. His lawyers told local media he is leaving for California, where his family is, as soon as possible.
Hours earlier, Vandenburg and Batey were both dressed in orange jumpsuits as they appeared in Judge Monte Watkins’ courtroom.
Batey’s defense attorney, Worrick Robinson, spoke first Wednesday. He addressed the court and explained why he believes Batey should be allowed bond. Vandenburg’s attorney later did the same.
The state argued that both should be considered flight risks due to the duo’s “likelihood of conviction.”
Representatives for bonding agencies attended the hearing, stating whether they would continue to conduct business with Batey and Vandenburg.
A representative for Nashville Bonding Company said they did not want Batey’s bond back with them. His defense attorney requested bond be reduced by half due to this. The request was denied.
Another company that previously shared Batey’s bond with Nashville Bonding Company, Free At Last, said it will not charge a new premium for his bond.
When asked, a company representative said, “I would like juror No. 9 to pay our fees.”
A new trial date was not set Wednesday, but the judge did say he can move things around to accommodate the new trial.
Batey and Vandenburg were convicted in January of all charges against them in the June 2013 rape of an unconscious female student.
In the court order declaring the mistrial, the court found that jury foreman Todd Easter, or Juror No. 9, “failed” to speak the truth during the selection process in the trial.
“The defendants have a right to a fair and impartial trial, a right that was violated by Juror No. 9’s misconduct,” the order stated. “By failing to disclose being the named victim in a twenty-three count statutory rape indictment, the presumption of jury bias was met.”
Easter has maintained he viewed the relationship as consensual and noted his parents were the ones to file the original complaint, not himself.
Davidson County District Attorney Glenn Funk told News 2 the prosecution plans to request a new trial and noted Vandenburg and Batey do not have to be re-charged or re-indicted.
Two other former students, Brandon Banks and Jaborian “Tip” McKenzie, are accused in the case. However, their trials have yet to be set.