Wanted man denied bond after surrendering in downtown Jacksonville rape, police mum on connections to three other cases

April 26, 2013

A Jacksonville man turned himself into police last week, just hours after authorities publicly announced he was wanted on a Jacksonville sexual battery charge connected to a February rape in downtown Jacksonville. Police broadcast Jerry Gallion's name and photo in asking for the public's help in locating him last week, according to a report on First Coast News. That evening, Gallion turned himself in and the next morning he was in court, ordered to be held without bond in the case. Police said there have been four rapes in a five-block area downtown, all of homeless women, and there was one reported as recently as April 19, the television station reported.

Gallion has only been charged with one count of sexual battery in Duval County and one count of kidnapping, but police have said there are similarities in the four rapes that have been reported, according to the television news report. No doubt the police will now being trying to contact the other three victims in these Jacksonville Sex Crimes cases and determine if they can identify Gallion as the suspect in their assault as well. In Jacksonville Sex Crimes cases like Gallion's, where it is known that he may be a suspect in other cases, prosecutors will ask for the defendant to be held without bond, or ask for a high enough bond that it is unlikely the defendant will be able to post it and be released from jail. The state typically argues that the defendant is a flight risk, meaning he or she may be likely to skip town and not appear in court. And in many cases the judges agree. The initial bond is always set in first appearance court, where all defendants in Jacksonville Criminal Defense cases appear within 24 hours of their arrest. The key figure in a Jacksonville bond is 10 percent of the total - that's the amount that's typically needed to pay a bondsman to get someone out of jail. So, if someone has a $10,000 bond, a friend or family member can get the person released with $1,000 while the defendant waits for the case to be resolved.

The release comes with certain conditions, which typically include not leaving the state and not picking up any other criminal charges. If there is a violation, the state will almost certain ask for the bond to be revoked and for the judge to order the defendant back to jail. If the Jacksonville Criminal Defense Attorney feels the bond is too high, he or he can request a bond hearing to take a second look at the issue. In a bond hearing, both the state and the Jacksonville Criminal Defense Attorney have an opportunity to state their case and the judge makes the ultimate decision. In most cases, the judge issues some kind of bond, unless the charge is murder. The exact charges have not been filed in Gallion's case, but it appears likely he will be charged with capital sexual battery. Capital sexual battery in Duval County is the only charge other than murder to carry a mandatory life sentence in the state of Florida. If that ends up being the charge in this Jacksonville Sex Crimes case, Gallion may not get a bond and would likely be in jail until trial.

If you or a loved one needs a criminal defense attorney in Jacksonville or the surrounding area, call The Mussallem Law Firm at (904) 365-5200 for a FREE CONSULTATION. Our Jacksonville Sex Crimes Attorney, Victoria "Tori" Mussallem, is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.