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Bond reduced for man accused of attempted kidnapping, more

A magistrate reduced the bond of a man accused of multiple crimes, including trying to kidnap his ex.

Shelton K. Coates, 37, of Morgantown, had hoped for an even lower bond. Coates is charged with attempted kidnapping, burglary, receiving or transferring a stolen vehicle, and possession of Xanax with intent.

His attorney Scott Shough asked Magistrate Ron Bane to reduce Coates’ bond from $100,000 to $15,000. Even that would be a struggle for Coates and his mother to post but it was “in the realm of being possible.” He said Coates worked two jobs. 

Coates said he would definitely show up to court if he made bond and he wants to handle the situation. Coates said he’s worked hard at two jobs over the past year and the Friendship Room and Health Right helped him get the jobs.

Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Brandon Benchoff opposed the reduction.

“Overall it’s a serious group of allegations against Mr. Coates,” he said.

Benchoff said the series of charges began when Coates started a confrontation with his ex-girlfriend at her home over property of his in her home. The situation escalated when he grabbed her and tried to force her into a vehicle against her will. After Coates struck the victim, witnesses intervened and he allegedly showed a knife before driving off in a vehicle later identified as stolen. The next day he broke into the same home harassing and threatening those inside as he looked for his ex before running away when police were called. 

According to a criminal complaint, those incidents were June 22 and 23.

On June 28, Coates was spotted by an officer with the Morgantown Police Department in downtown Morgantown. When Coates noticed the officer he ran and was eventually found in an underground cement area behind Whisper Nightclub, according to a criminal complaint. Benchoff said officers found over 40 Xanax on Coates.

Bane said he would reduce the bond by half, to $50,000, but that $15,000 was too low and Coates needed to have skin in the game.

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