Bonds raised in drive-by shooting|[5/25/05]

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 25, 2005

A Jackson lawyer and her Vicksburg business partner are expected to post $200,000 bonds each this morning after spending the night in the Madison County jail.

Judith Kristie Smith, 37, 132 Pebble Beach Drive, Vicksburg, and Thomas Randy Clark Jr., 33, 109 Hillside Circle, turned themselves in to authorities Tuesday when additional charges were filed. They had been charged with a drive-by shooting and released on $5,000 bonds Sunday, but Madison-Rankin County District Attorney David Clark said the original bonds were too low for the seriousness of the charge.

“More evidence was gathered, and it is clear and convincing evidence,” said the district attorney. “These people pulled up beside a car and fired numerous shots. There were three people in the car. It is by the grace of God that no one died.”

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Bonds set for the drive-by shooting charge were increased to $50,000 each and both were charged with two counts of aggravated assault which carried bonds of $150,000 each.

Madison County authorities say they expect bonds to be posted this morning and for Smith and Randy Clark to be released.

Ridgeland police say both were in the drive-through lane of a fast-food restaurant on County Line Road around 12:30 Sunday morning when the Jaguar they were in struck the back of a Toyota driven by Susan Wiltshire, 22, of Brandon. A verbal exchange took place at the time.

Wiltshire left the restaurant and was heading north on Old Canton Road when the Jaguar pulled up beside her vehicle and several shots were fired, police reports said. Wiltshire was hit once in the left side.

Two passengers, Elizabeth Wiltshire and Joseph Turnage, both 19, were unharmed. Police have not found a weapon.

Wiltshire had a second operation Tuesday to repair damaged arteries and was in fair condition at University Medical Center, according to authorities.

Smith and Clark are business partners in Manicures, Martinis and Magic, 1312 Washington St., in downtown Vicksburg.

Smith is also a family lawyer who has been a member of the Mississippi Bar Association since 1994, according to her colleagues. She operates Smith-Miller, Boone and Associates in Jackson.

On Monday, Clark also reported to Vicksburg police that he had received a threatening message following the shooting and that his home had been burglarized. Among the items reported missing was a Glock 10mm pistol.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for June 7.