COLLIERVILLE, Tenn. — The man accused of killing his estranged wife and wounding a man in Collierville earlier this month will remain in jail under a $1.5 million bond.
Eric Otten entered Colliervile Municipal Court Tuesday for a bond hearing and met with his attorney Blake Ballin.
The 52-year-old from Olive Branch is charged with first-degree murder in the death of his estranged wife, 47-year-old Jenni Otten, and the critical wounding of 51-year-old Mark Cross.
A number of family and friends of the victims were present in court opposing any bond reduction for Otten.
Among them was Mark’s father Tommy Cross. Mark is paralyzed from the waist down and was undergoing surgery while his father spoke.
“I think it would be hypocritical to have this man out on bond when my son is looking at the ceiling and that’s all he has to do is look at the ceiling for the rest of his life is look at the ceiling and for this man to be out walking around, that’s a problem,” Cross said.
Otten fled Collierville after the shootings but was found by U.S. Marshals in Jarrell, Texas the next day.
While Otten’s attorney argued for a reduced bond, the prosecutor objected, saying Otten’s actions prove he is a flight risk. Judge Lee Ann Pafford Dobson agreed.
“The fact that he has a passport, the fact that Texas was not the only state that he traveled through, I am not inclined to modify the bond in any way and I’m going to leave it at,” the judge said.
Following Tuesday’s hearing, all of the family or friends declined to comment but Ballin, unhappy his client’s bond remains at one point five million, says the next step is the preliminary hearing.
“We believe there’s much more to this than meets the eye. He’s charged with first degree murder. We believe as the evidence comes out the truth will show this is something quite different than a first degree murder,” Ballin said.
Otten will appear in court again on October 10.