Judge Carey Nelson set cash or property bond at $1 million for Austin Levi Payne, charged with felony murder in connection with the death of 1-year-old daughter, Journey Ann Cowart. He had not sought bond since his arrest.
Payne and Brandy Ann Boyd, the child’s mother, were arrested on Jan. 23 after signs of child abuse were discovered during an autopsy. The death was ruled a homicide by the medical examiner in January.
“... Some of the injuries that occurred were a fractured skull, blunt force trauma to the stomach. The child had healed ribs that had previously been broken, and she also had a femur that had been cracked and had already healed,” Sheriff Clark Millsap said Feb. 3. “The medical examiner said this appears to her to be the worst she has ever seen. It’s a systematic six to seven months worth of abuse to this young child.”
The case has not been presented to the grand jury because of pending autopsy results from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.
“We did the autopsy, but the report is not complete. It will be a while,” GBI Director of Public Affairs Sherry Lang said May 2.
If using a bond company, Payne would be required to present 15 percent of the $1 million bond, or $150,000, which is nonrefundable. To meet the property bond, 40 percent of the property must be worth $1 million and free of liens.