Attorneys for migrant accused in St. Johns County deputy’s death ask for him to be released on bond. What happens next?

Attorneys for Vergilio Aguilar-Mendez have again asked for a bond in his case.

He’s the man accused of manslaughter in the death of St. Johns County Sgt. Michael Kunovich.

His attorneys argue he is at fault. The Medical Examiner found Sgt. Kunovich died of a heart condition.

Aguilar-Mendez’s defense team argues the 18-year-old didn’t know he was resisting deputies with violence.

MORE: Civil attorney for 18-year-old migrant accused in St. Johns County deputy’s death says client was racially profiled

They said in the confusion of the arrest, he wasn’t violent, though violence was done to him.

And that his actions did not cause the death of the late Sgt. Kunovich.

His attorneys want to argue this in court while trying to get him a bond. It’s written in a motion for him to either be released with the promise of coming back to court or with a $5,000 bond. Last month the judge said Aguilar-Mendez was incompetent to proceed and attorneys outside the case said he falls in limbo in the state statute.

“The reason he doesn’t fit into the two categories is because one category is mental health, and he’s not mentally ill based on what the order says. The other category is intellectual disability, so IQ issues and cognitive issues. And again, there’s no evidence that he’s in that category, either,” said defense attorney Shannon Schott, who is not affiliated with the case. “Under our incompetency rules, a case has stayed, but it doesn’t mean you stop working on that case, it just means that the judge may not be able to take up any evidentiary issues. Bond certainly could be outside of that, again this is for Judge [R. Lee] Smith to really sit and think about.”

MORE: Medical examiner says struggle with migrant, possible emotional stress contributed to death of St. Johns County deputy | Video of arrest in St. Johns County highlights issues between police, Spanish-speaking residents | Attorney says 2 key questions in death of St. Johns County deputy: How did he die and was suspect trespassing? | Video of arrest in St. Johns County highlights issues between police, Spanish-speaking residents

Here’s how things could go from here, according to Schott.

“If the court decides that they are going to have an evidentiary hearing on the bond, they will hear testimony, they will consider the newly discovered evidence including the autopsy that really undermines the strength of the state’s case, and calls into question whether or not Mr. Aguilar-Mendez actually committed a manslaughter, and certainly that will be argued by the defense,” Schott said.

Schott said if Aguilar-Mendez doesn’t meet the criteria to be held involuntarily then he must be released. She said if they move forward they will consider the new evidence, including the autopsy that calls into question whether or not Aguilar Mendez committed manslaughter.

“What the defense is most likely trying to communicate by filing these motions, even when the case is stayed, is ‘Hey, community hey St. Johns County, you need to keep eyes on this, you need to hold the State Attorney’s Office accountable because everyone is entitled to their civil rights,” Schott said. “Everyone who is here in America is afforded every constitutional right, every civil right that we as citizens are afforded.”

Aguilar-Mendez’s new immigration attorney said there is no deportation order on him, meaning if released he won’t be immediately deported. The next step is a bond hearing in front of an immigration judge.

The case has received national attention and more than 500,000 people signed an online petition calling for Aguilar-Mendez to be released.

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