What to expect for Darius Miles' hearing Wednesday in capital murder case

Nick Kelly
The Tuscaloosa News

Former Alabama basketball player Darius Miles will have a bond hearing Wednesday, the next step of many that have occurred in the capital murder case from the shooting death of Jamea Harris on the Strip in Tuscaloosa on Jan. 15.

The hearing will be held in Tuscaloosa County circuit court with judge Daniel Pruet presiding.

Miles and friend Michael Davis have been in jail without bond since Jan. 15 after they were arrested and charged with capital murder. Investigators believe the gun used to kill Harris belonged to Miles, 21, but believe Davis, now 21, pulled the trigger, per court documents. A grand jury indicted Miles and Davis on capital murder charges in March.

A district court judge denied bond for Miles and Davis after a preliminary hearing in February.

Davis will not have a bond hearing Wednesday because his attorney John Robbins has applied for youthful offender status. Davis was 20 on Jan. 15.

While Davis' youthful offender status is reviewed, the records for him in the case are not available to the public. He will have a hearing July 21, and Pruet will make a determination after the state completes a background check.

So that leaves Miles as the only defendant part of the hearing on Wednesday.

Here's what is expected from the hearing.

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What will be determined from the Darius Miles hearing

From the hearing, the judge will determine whether or not Miles should be released on bond. Discovery motions made previously by Miles' attorneys will also be addressed.

What will happen at the hearing

As part of the hearing, there will be an arraignment.

That means Miles is expected to be present at the hearing because he will be formally informed by the judge of the charges from the indictment. The judge will also make sure Miles understands his rights.

Then Miles will have a chance to enter a plea, guilty or not guilty.

Miles is expected to enter a not-guilty plea because his attorney, Mary Turner, filed court documents in April in which Miles pled not guilty.

Then as part of the hearing, each side will have a chance to argue why Miles should or should not be granted bond. Witnesses have been subpoenaed for testimony, according to court documents, but it's unclear whether testimony will occur for the judge to make his decision.

The judge might not immediately decide while on the bench whether Miles will be granted bond. The decision could come later in the day or the week.

What comes next in the Darius Miles capital murder case after the hearing?

No matter if Miles is or isn't granted bond, the next big step in the process is expected to be an immunity hearing.

In that hearing, there would be an opportunity for Turner to argue in front of a judge that Miles acted in self defense. If the judge found Miles supplied the gun to Davis in self defense, then Miles would have absolute immunity made possible by Alabama's stand your ground law. The case against Miles would then be dismissed.

If a judge doesn't make that ruling, it's likely the case goes in front of a jury in a trial.

Nick Kelly covers Alabama football and men's basketball for The Tuscaloosa News/USA TODAY Network. Reach him via email: Follow him on Twitter: @_NickKelly