ALBANY ALBANY — A former Albany Police Department detective who has been granted a new trial for a May 2010 child molestation conviction has been allowed a $7,500 bail, District Attorney Greg Edwards said Thursday.
Vincent Wadley walked free for the first time since the guilty verdict at his first trial for molesting a 7-year-old in May 2008.
Superior Court Stephen Goss, who originally denied bail, granted the bail Thursday at the Dougherty County Jail’s Judicial Center.
“I’m happy he is out,” said James Finkelstein, Wadley’s defense attorney. “I’m hopeful an appellate court will bar a new trial based on double jeopardy in four to six months.”
Wadley was with the Albany police for five years when he was charged and indicted. Convicted by a jury, Wadley petitioned the Dougherty Superior Court to vacate his conviction and call for a new trial, which it granted.
The conviction was vacated because Superior Court Judge Denise Marshall made opinionated remarks while presiding over Wadley’s first trial while the jury could hear them.
Wadley had been out on $10,000 bail during his first trial. At the district attorney’s request, Wadley had been denied bond for the second trial. He was remanded to the Dougherty County Jail until the new trial.
Finkelstein then filed a motion in Probate Court to have Wadley released until his trial date. Before Probate Judge Nancy Stephenson could rule on the motion, the district attorney’s office filed what’s known as a writ of prohibition to bar the probate judge from considering the matter.
Chief Superior Court Judge Willie Lockette granted a temporary restraining order on the Probate Court until he could review the writ and render a decision.
On Aug. 26, Finkelstein filed a civil rights violation suit in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia here in Albany, contending that Wadley’s constitutional rights were being violated by his incarceration until his new trial.
In his motion, Finkelstein argued that Wadley was initially granted bond, had “impeccable conduct” while awaiting his first trial and had met all of the requirements to receive a bond since his conviction was vacated.
With the court ruling in Finkelstein’s favor on the case, bail was set. District Attorney Greg Edwards said he was ready to go to trial.
“We were ready to go to trial then (before Wadley had bail),” Edwards said. “We are ready to go to trial now and present evidence to a jury.”