Cherokee County District Court Judge Wes Mobley has denied a motion to have murder suspect Terry McKinney’s Bond reduced – during preliminary hearings which got underway on Thursday at the Etowah County Judicial Center Robert Ray, State Appointed Defense Attorney for McKinney argued that the one million dollar bond currently in place was too high and unconstitutional. Attorneys for the State contend that due to the heinous nature in which the crime was committed the current bond was sufficient and Judge Mobley denied the motion to reduce it.
Also during the hearing Investigator Josh Summerford, Commander of the Cherokee County Major Crimes Unit was called to testify. Summerford explained in gruesome detail the events that unfolded from March 27th – March 29, he stated that the victim in the case who has been identified as Leroy Pete Foster of Cedar Bluff was reported missing by family members to police on March 27 and that two days later the Major Crimes Unit became involved after a citizen called 911 after their dog dragged up several body part onto their property.
Investigator Summerford went onto say that on the following Monday a search warrant was obtained for the home of 63 year old Terry McKinney on Rocky Ford Point Road in Cedar Bluff, it was also stated that the last time Foster was seen alive he was with McKinney. Testimony revealed that following a search of McKinney’s home Investigators found several items including a metal pan, hand grabber, pants belonging to the victim which all contained blood and human tissue, the victim’s wallet as well as a chainsaw that was used in the crime – in addition to several body parts found on the second floor of the home.
Investigators have obtained video surveillance and a receipt from the Harbor Freight Tools Store in Rome, Georgia showing McKinney purchasing the saw that was used. During his statement Summerford also said that while McKinney was at the jail, officers recovered human tissue and blood from his wheelchair.
During the interview process McKinney openly admitted to cutting up the victim, but contends that he did not kill him despite the fact that the crime took place at McKinney’s home and the fact that the State Medical Examiner recovered what is believed to be a bullet from the back shoulder of Foster.
Judge Mobley at that point ruled that there was sufficient evidence for probable cause and has now bound the case over to the Cherokee County Grand Jury which will be assembled next month – until that time Terry Lee McKinney remains in custody at the Etowah County Detention Center.