Bailey Trial Update

A year after he allegedly shot and killed Panama City Beach Police Officer Kevin Kight, Robert Bailey still awaits his trial.

Robert Bailey is still in the Bay County Jail annex, awaiting trial for Kight's murder, but he has been sitting idle.

A lot has happened during the year since Robert Bailey's arrest. He's attempted an escape from the Bay County Jail, changed lawyers, and tried to create an insanity defense for himself.

Nine hours after he allegedly shot and killed Panama City Beach Police Officer Kevin Kight, authorities found then-23-year-old Robert Bailey behind a building at the Sugarsands Motel.

His two friends, initially arrested with Bailey, are no longer facing any charges in connection with the Kight murder. Prosecutors eventually dropped their cases against 31-year-old John Braz and 20-year-old D'Tori Crawford.

But Bailey has been behind bars ever since his arrest. There have been several disruptive incidents involving Bailey at both the Bay County Jail and the jail annex.

The most serious happened in August when corrections officers foiled an escape attempt. His girlfriend, 23-year-old Andrea Guinette, smuggled several hacksaw blades into the jail.

Bailey sawed away several of the bars of his cell windows before he was discovered. Guinette got three-years for her part in the escape attempt.

This past December prosecutors released a phone conversation between Bailey and a friend, during which Bailey discussed how he's building a defense based on mental retardation.

Robert Bailey said, “They've got another psychiatrist coming to see me. If you get some letters that are kind of weird, don't mind them. I was talking about how I was from the future.”

Around that same time, Bailey's defense attorney Walter Smith asked to step down from the case. Attorney Michael Flowers from Niceville and John Gontarek out of Fort Walton Beach have taken the case. They already filed a motion to have the trial moved out of Bay County.

As for when and where the trial will take place, prosecutors say they're hoping it will happen soon.

Steve Meadows, State Attorney, says, "Well, we have been delayed because of the new attorneys coming aboard and having to start from scratch for the preparation of their case. But we're moving this case as quickly as we can and we hope by the late summer or early fall to have it concluded."

Despite the media coverage this case has gotten, state attorney Steve Meadows remains optimistic about keeping the venue here in Bay County. Meadows says he's confident the jurors of Bay County will give Bailey a fair trail.

If convicted of the murder of Officer Kevin Kight, Bailey could face the death penalty.


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