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Bond reduced for suspect in Facebook photo abuse case

Published: Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012 5:30 a.m. CDT

CHICAGO – A Cook County judge dramatically reduced bond Friday for a Chicago man accused of binding his young daughter with tape and posting a picture on Facebook.

Andre Curry’s bond was dropped from $100,000 to $30,000 under Judge Lawrence Flood’s ruling, meaning only $3,000 is needed for Curry to be released. Torey Barrett, Curry’s pastor, said he believed the family could raise the bond money by the end of the day on Friday.

The judge imposed conditions on Curry’s release, prohibiting him from having contact with the girl, her mother or any child under the age of 18. Curry also cannot use the Internet.

“I’ll comply with everything you just said,” Curry, 21, told the judge. “No problem.”

Prosecutors asked the judge to keep bond at $100,000.

Zachary Hamilton, Curry’s attorney, urged the judge to lower the bond. Hamilton told the judge that Curry loves his daughter and that an examination from a doctor determined the girl wasn’t hurt.

 Curry is confident once he undergoes a court-ordered assessment by the Department of Children and Family Services that the judge will allow him to see his daughter, Hamilton said.

Curry’s mother, Brandi Phillips, said after the hearing that her son made a mistake.

“This child was never hurt, never in danger,” Phillips said.

The case became national news after Curry posted on his Facebook page the photo of his 22-month-old daughter near the caption: “This is wut happens wen my baby hits me back.”

Police and the state agency launched investigations, and Curry was arrested on a charge of aggravated domestic battery Dec. 20, seven days after the photograph appeared on his Facebook page. He has been in jail since, unable to post the required 10 percent, or $10,000, he needs to be released.

Since then, a grand jury indicted him on the felony aggravated domestic battery count, and aggravated battery and unlawful restraint. Curry has pleaded not guilty.

From the day he appeared in court in December, his attorneys have maintained that Curry was just joking around when he took the photograph with his cellphone camera and posted it. They’ve said he was not punishing the child and did not hurt her.

DCFS has said that until the photo was posted, the agency had never investigated Curry.

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