NEW ORLEANS -- Glenn Metz IV is wanted for second-degree murder. Police say Metz and co-defendant LaShawn Wells shot three men during a second-line parade in September 2012, killing one of them.
But even though Metz was arrested shortly after the Jackson Avenue shooting, he is no longer behind bars. After three months in Orleans Parish Prison, Metz, 17, was released when his grandfather put up two pieces of property to cover a $300,000 bond set by Magistrate Commissioner Jonathan Friedman.
Last week, a grand jury indicted Metz for second-degree murder and two counts of attempted second-degree murder. So now there's a warrant for his arrest that carries a $1.5 million bond. Police have not been able to locate Metz since the indictment was issued on Jan. 10.
"This is an individual who should not be on the streets,” District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro said. “He should be in custody. He's demonstrated a propensity to commit violent criminal acts."
Cannizzaro, a former judge, said he believes that nearly all defendants are entitled to bail. But in light of two back-to-back charges against Metz shortly before his murder arrest, Cannizzaro is questioning the oversight of Metz by the court.
Court records revealed the details of Metz’s prior arrests, both unrelated to the homicide.
In July, Metz was booked after a cocaine bust. Police say they were responding to a narcotics complaint when they approached Metz and a companion. As Metz tried to bolt, he allegedly discarded a plastic bag containing 10 rocks of crack.
Metz was booked with possession with intent to distribute cocaine and his bond was set at $10,000. He was released after posting a commercial surety bond.
One month later, on Aug. 6, Metz was booked with carrying a gun. Police said they responded to a complaint and came across Metz at the corner of Sixth and Carondolet streets. Metz tried to run, but was quickly caught by officers. During a pat down, officers stated they found a loaded black handgun in Metz’s right rear pocket.
Metz was booked with illegal carrying of a weapon and his bond was set at $25,000. Again, Metz was released after posting a commercial surety bond.
Cannizzaro said Metz’s subsequent murder arrest should have raised red flags. Three bond releases in three different cases within three months should have led to tighter conditions of release, he said. Those restrictions can include mandatory drug tests, more frequent court appearances, closer monitoring by probation officers and electronic monitoring by ankle bracelet.
"This is very disturbing,” Cannizzaro said. “It's very disturbing when someone gets a break, so to speak. He's arrested for a charge, he gets a break, he's allowed to make a bond and he gets out and commits additional crimes."
Magistrate Judge Gerard Hansen defended the bonds, saying all of them seemed reasonable. Furthermore, he said, only a tiny percentage of defendants are able to post a $300,000 bond.
“I know I couldn’t make that kind of bond,” Hansen said. “I think it’s a reasonable bond. Bond is not meant as punishment, it’s meant to ensure a defendant’s appearance in court. Every defendant is innocent until proven guilty.”
But Cannizzaro said the nature and close succession of Metz’s arrests is troubling.
"You see, unfortunately, that very common mixture of guns and drugs equals violence, and in this case the violence is a homicide," Cannizzaro said. “We believe he is a dangerous individual who needs to be in custody."
Metz's grandfather, Steve Dooley, said he does not believe his grandson is trying to dodge authorities. He said he will try to contact him and get him to surrender to authorities. Metz’s attorney, Ammon Miller, did not return calls for comment.
LaShawn Wells, 18, also was indicted on the murder and attempted murder charges last week. Awaiting trial behind bars at Parish Prison, Wells' bail was increased to $1.5 million.