Chester Co. judge shows concern for Tyler Terry’s well-being in first court appearance; suspect to undergo mental health evaluation

South Carolina News

CHESTER COUNTY, S.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) — On Tuesday, accused murderer Tyler Terry walked into the courtroom for the first time since his capture, his hands and feet shackled.

Terry is facing dozens of charges, including at least 11 counts of attempted murder.

As Terry listened to Chester County Magistrate Judge Jeffrey Garis explain what was happening in the courtroom, he just stared at him. Judge Garis questioned him several times about his well-being.

“You feeling alright today?” the judge asked Garis.

Terry responded in a barely audible voice.

“Excuse me, can you speak up?” Garis asked. “I just want to make sure you understand where you’re at. Do you understand where you’re at today? Where are you?”

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“Courtroom,” Terry said back.

“Do you understand everything I’ve said so far? I’m not quite sure you’re following everything I’m saying,” Judge Garis said. “Do you have any questions so far about anything we’ve discussed? Are you feeling okay?”

Terry’s lawyers believe he may have been nervous but the judge questioned his ability to comprehend.

“I’m always concerned though that the defendant is aware of what’s going on and I’m hoping that the attorneys are aware of his condition going forward,” Judge Garis said.

“We have no concern based on our conversation this morning,” Terry’s lawyer responded.

Terry’s charges are in both Chester County and the City of Chester, but the verdict was the same for both the county and the city—his bond was denied.

“On all the charges you’re facing in the City of Chester this afternoon, sir, I am denying you bond on all charges.”

When asked if Terry should get the death penalty, Chester County Sheriff Max Dorsey says he couldn’t comment on that just yet but he should never be free again.

“There is no reason for him to be out on our streets ever again. Again, that’s not up to me to decide. That’s for a judge and jury to decide,” Sheriff Dorsey said. “In the end, it’s my opinion that he should never see the light of day.”

Terry will undergo a mental health evaluation as a standard protocol for some new inmates. 

Terry is yet to face the formal reading of his charges in York County, South Carolina, or St. Louis, Missouri. Thus far, he has does not have a lawyer on his York County case. It’s not yet clear if he has a Missouri lawyer yet.

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