HOLLIDAYSBURG - An Altoona man recently charged with assault has agreed to revocation of his bail if prosecutors would not seek to forfeit the money posted by a professional bail bondsman on his behalf for unrelated gun and drug charges.
The decision saves the bail bondsman $30,000, a cost that eventually would likely have landed back in the suspect's lap.
The defendant, Davon L. Smith, 28, of the 800 block of 22nd Street was charged in June with breaking a man's jaw while involved in a fracas outside the Monkey Wharf Bar in Altoona.
The charges filed by Altoona police indicate that Smith, nicknamed "Flip," was involved in a spat with a girlfriend outside the bar on the early morning of June 7.
The victim came outside to see what was happening, and Smith left the area.
He returned later, the charges stated, and approached the victim. He hit him several times and then kicked him.
Assistant District Attorney Pete Weeks filed a petition asking that Smith's bail on other charges be revoked and the bail forfeited, meaning the bail bondsman would be required to pay the bail money to Blair County.
Smith came before Judge Wade Kagarise late Tuesday.
Weeks said he would agree to drop the request for forfeiture if Smith would agree to bail revocation, meaning he would stay in the Blair County Prison pending the outcome of his many court cases.
Smith was hesitant. He tried to explained to Kagarise the fight was mutual.
Weeks said whether Smith attacked the victim or the two agreed to fight, it would still be a crime and a violation of his bail conditions.
Smith agonized over the decision for a lengthy period of time before Kagarise insisted that he make a decision - go to the hearing or agree to the deal.
The suspect agreed to bail revocation, and the request to forfeit the bail was dropped.
Court records show that Smith was on unsecured bail for a firearms charge but on $30,000 bail, 10 percent, for alleged distribution of heroin.
This was the second local bail forfeiture request since a Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling in a Fulton County homicide case ruled that bail could be forfeited if a suspect repeatedly violated his bail conditions.
The first Blair County case decided two weeks ago forfeited $42,900 of $55,000 posted for Toryan White, 24, of Altoona.
White had been arrested for assault and drug charges, and, while on bail, got into additional trouble by attempting to flee police and finally crashing into a stone wall at the Altoona Women's Club. He then fled on foot.