Witnesses began testifying Monday in the trial of a man accused of fatally beating another man inside the Richmond County jail.
Jeremy G. Taylor, 33, has pleaded not guilty to charges of murder and aggravated battery in the 2011 death of Earl Bolar, 48.
Taylor’s legal troubles began the morning of Aug. 3, 2011, when he attacked another man at a Walker Street substance abuse treatment facility.
Richmond County Sheriff’s Deputy Christopher Hill testified Monday that Taylor didn’t seem angry, upset, or under the influence when he answered a call at the house.
When Hill asked Taylor why he attacked the man, “He said because he felt like it.”
At the time, the victim didn’t appear seriously injured. Later, it was determined that the man’s jaw was broken.
As Deputy Ponyetta Odums completed Taylor’s booking at the jail on 401 Walton Way, he seemed fine, she testified Monday. He was no trouble, didn’t appear to be under the influence, nor did he act aggressively. She put him in a holding cell with several other men also accused of misdemeanor crimes, including Bolar.
Bolar was asleep in the cell when Taylor attacked him, according to the other men in the holding cell and a video recording.
Another inmate caught Odums’ attention and indicated someone was being beaten. She opened the holding cell door and found Bolar lying on the floor, gasping. Blood was pouring out of his mouth and nose, she testified. His skull was cracked open.
Astonished, Odums testified she asked the other men in the cell who did this. “I did it,” she quoted Taylor as saying. “Because I felt like it.”
Bolar never regained consciousness and was kept alive on life support until Aug. 17, 2011.