BENNINGTON -- A judge has decided to release a former basketball coach accused of molesting a 7-year-old girl on stricter conditions and higher bail than he had been free on before the state filed a more serious charge.
Judge Nancy Corsones issued her written decision regarding Leo Reynolds, 67, a former coach of the Mount Anthony Union High School girls basketball team, on Thursday. He must post cash or take out a bond on a $150,000 bail amount, rather than post a 15 percent deposit like he had done in early January when he was arraigned.
His attorney, David Silver, said Thursday his client intends to post on the bond and be let out of the Rutland jail. Silver said he disagrees with some legal elements of Corsones' ruling, but does plan to appeal the decision.
Reynolds will be under a 24-hour-per-day, seven-day-per-week curfew at a home in Poultney, where he resides with his wife. Reynolds had been living in Bennington, but his release conditions required him to move.
He can leave the Poultney home under "eyeball supervision" of his wife, or a person over the age of 18 familiar with the charges against him. Reynolds' other conditions remained, such as he is not allowed to contact the alleged victim, her family members, or be within 300 feet of them, their house, work or vehicles. He is also not allowed contact with anyone under 16 without the supervision of a person 18 or over.
In early January, Reynolds pleaded not guilty to four counts of lewd and lascivious conduct with a child. He was released on bail and conditions, however the alleged victim disclosed to her therapist, who then told her mother, that Reynolds' finger had entered her vagina when he touched her in his home. Police then interviewed the girl a second time. This element led the state to file a much more serious charge of sexual assault on a victim under 13 against Reynolds. Lewd and lascivious conduct carries a two-year minimum and a 15-year maximum, while the sex assault charge carries a 10-year minimum and a life maximum.
Reynolds has pleaded not guilty to all of the charges against him. He was held without bail last week when the sex assault charge was filed, then a bail hearing was held on Monday which took several hours. Corsones said she needed time to weigh the evidence presented because she anticipated either side appealing the decision to the Vermont Supreme Court.
According to the "Vermont Offender Locator," a website hosted by the Department of Corrections, as of Thursday at 6 p.m. Reynolds was still being held in the Rutland jail.
Contact Keith Whitcomb Jr. at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @KWhitcombjr.