Bond denied in fatal beating

A Superior Court judge denied bond, for now, for a Columbia County mother and son accused of murder.

Despite defense attorney arguments this morning that the evidence against Rebecca Sears, 41, and Christopher Bowers, 19, for the March 25 murder of Laverne “Kay” Parsons is circumstantial, Judge J. Carlisle Overstreet denied granting the pair bond during a hearing at the Columbia County Justice Center.

However, Judge Overstreet said Mrs. Sears' and Mr. Bowers' attorneys, Victor Hawk and Jacque Hawk, respectively, may request a second bond hearing following an April 29 preliminary hearing.

The Hawks had asked the judge to delay ruling on the bond until after the preliminary hearing, where they said they intend present evidence showing that their clients didn’t kill 41-year-old Mrs. Parsons.

Police arrested Mr. Bowers, of the 4000 block of Briarwood Drive, Martinez, and Mrs. Sears, of 227 Hot Springs Drive, Grovetown, three days following the murder.

Assistant District Attorney Philip Catalano, who asked Judge Overstreet to deny bond, referred to Mrs. Sears as the “mastermind” of Mrs. Parsons' homicide. As Mrs. Parsons next-door neighbor, Mr. Catalano said Mrs. Sears knew the victim’s schedule and that her husband, David Parsons, was out of town.

Mr. Catalano said Mrs. Sears told her son when to strike and that it was Mr. Bowers who beat Mrs. Parsons to death with a claw hammer.

The prosecutor called Mr. Sears and Mr. Bowers flight risks and dangers to the community.

“They’ve showed they would do anything to avoid punishment,” said Mr. Catalano, referring to a March 26 incident when police believe Mr. Bowers shot his mother in the leg outside of her Augusta workplace to deceive authorities.

Mrs. Sears, a mother of five, previously was arrested for shoplifting in 1990, Mr. Catalano told Judge Overstreet.

According to police, Mr. Bowers was arrested in May 2008 for marijuana possession and driving under the influence of drugs.

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