Circuit Court Judge Thomas Russo denied bond for Lakavis Harrison, 26, Friday morning. Judge Russo says Harrison is a threat to the community.
In January, Florence police arrested Harrison and four others for the murder of Michael Hawkins. The community activist was shot to death at his home on Harmony Street on New Years Day. Hawkins' teenage daughter witnessed the shooting, but prosecutors say she was too afraid to come to court today.
Police say Harrison was seen standing outside Hawkins home moments before the shooting.
12th Circuit Solicitor Ed Clements told the judge Harrison was a flight risk.
"It took a long time to apprehend him. His family knew he was wanted for questioning and they knew he was a suspect and they hid him. So, we just felt like if he gets out he would hide," said Clements.
Prosecutors also made the judge aware of Harrison's criminal record. They say it's quite extensive with convictions for burglary .
Harrison's attorney argued there is no physical evidence that ties his client to the crime scene and felt Harrison should have been granted bond.
Harrison testified saying he would do what's right if released on bond. Hawkins' close friends believe the judge made the right decision by keeping Harrison in jail until his trial.
"When the judge denied him bond, I felt that a part of Michael's victory had been won. It's still a long way to go. So, I think justice was done, " said Ann Scott.