Thursday, April 19, 2018
Public safety

Trevor Dooley asks Hillsborough judge for bail

TAMPA — Trevor Dooley, sentenced to eight years in prison for fatally shooting his neighbor, once again appeared in court Monday.

This time, Dooley, 72, dressed in a red jumpsuit, slumped against a wooden bench and rested his head on a cane.

His lawyers asked Hillsborough Circuit Judge Ashley Moody to grant him bail while he appeals his case, pointing to Dooley's perfect attendance at previous court dates and poor health condition.

"This is the kind of individual that will show up," said Dooley's attorney, Ronald Tulin. "He's not going to be a danger to society."

Prosecutors argued that Dooley may be at "risk of flight" because of his age and possible connections to people in Jamaica, his birthplace.

"It's true that the defendant has appeared," said prosecutor Stephen Udagawa, but he added that the "circumstances have changed."

At the end of the 20-minute hearing, Moody said she would issue a written decision, though she did not specify a date.

Dooley was convicted in November of manslaughter for shooting neighbor David James in a 2010 argument over whether a skateboarder was allowed to use the basketball courts in a Valrico neighborhood. James, 41, who was playing basketball with his then 8-year-old daughter, had given the boy permission to skate. Dooley came over to point out a sign that prohibited skateboarding on the court. The two men argued. As Dooley turned to leave, James spun him around. During his trial, Dooley testified he shot James because he feared for his life.

Dooley's other convictions include improper exhibition of a gun and openly carrying a weapon.

In January, he was sentenced to eight years in prison.

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Published: 04/18/18
Updated: 04/19/18