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Dec 3, 2012 9:34 PM

Judge Denies Bond For Man Accused In HOA Shootings

LOUISVILLE. (AP) - A judge refused Monday to set bond for a Louisville man charged with fatally shooting two members of his homeowners association.

Mahmoud Yousef Hindi, 55, has been held without bond since he was jailed after the Sept. 6 shooting at an eastern Louisville church. The shooting was spurred by arguments Hindi had with the homeowners association about the property where he was living, police said.

Hindi's attorney told Jefferson Circuit Judge Fred Cowan that defendants in similar murder cases are given a bond amount so they have an opportunity to leave jail while awaiting trial.

"We have cases in this county far worse than what we are seeing here and everybody's (given) bail," said Louisville attorney Mike Lemke.

Cowan ruled that Hindi would remain jailed without bond.

Hindi, a former physician, has declared that he has no money and was living in his children's house at the time of the shooting. Lemke was assigned to Hindi as a public defender.

Prosecutors argued that Hindi's admission to police that he shot and killed 73-year-old David Merritt and 69-year-old Marvin Fisher at the meeting should be enough to keep him held without the possibility of bond.

Louisville Police Detective Yolanda Baker testified that police have a statement from Hindi admitting he shot and killed the two men. During a cross examination from Lemke, Baker said police found documents at Hindi's home in which he was "making threats" to Merritt and Fisher.

"Was there anything in the letters that said anything about shooting anybody?" Lemke asked Baker.

"Not to my knowledge," she replied.

Last year Hindi also wrote to an attorney for the homeowners association saying he would "protect the sacred interest of my kids even if it comes to killing and even if I lose my own life in the course of doing so." The letter was part of the evidence in a lawsuit between Hindi and the homeowners association.

Cowan admonished Lemke during the hearing for suggesting that there was a "suspicion" that Hindi was "sitting on some monumental pile of money and that whatever bond is set some foreign interest is going to come in and post it and take him away." Hindi is a Jordanian-American citizen.

Cowan said the comments have "no basis in evidence."

Lemke and Commonwealth's Attorney Erin White declined to comment after Monday's ruling.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)


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