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Dequan Smith

Dequan Smith plead not guilty to four charges, including attempted murder, in district court in the Morton County courthouse on Wednesday morning in Mandan.

A judge on Wednesday denied an attorney's request to reduce the bond for a 16-year-old boy accused of shooting a woman in the back in December, citing his prior firearm offenses in other states.

Dequan Smith, 16, was charged with felony counts of attempted murder, reckless endangerment, delivery of an imitation controlled substance and two counts of aggravated assault. At his arraignment on Wednesday, Smith pleaded not guilty to all charges.

On Dec. 30, Mandan police responded to the area of the Mandan Post Office for a report of a 27-year-old woman who had been shot in the back, according to court records. She was taken to the hospital with injuries that were not life-threatening.

The victim's 49-year-old mother, who was there when the shooting happened, told police her daughter previously attempted to buy marijuana from Smith, but he, instead, sold her a bag of cereal.

The mother told police that days later she was driving around with the victim and her other daughter and saw Smith and another man, and her daughters started yelling at them. As they drove away, the mother recalled hearing five to six gunshots.

Police later found .40 caliber shell cases in the area where the shooting occurred at Third Avenue Northeast and Second Street Northeast in Mandan. 

Smith's court-appointed attorney Justin Balzer asked South Central District Judge Bruce Romanick on Wednesday to reduce Smith's $100,000 bond, which he called "excessive."

"I know the seriousness of these charges, but that $100,000 just seems excessive to me," he said.

Morton County assistant state's attorney Gabrielle Goter asked the bond be kept in place.

"Because of the danger to the public in this case, I do believe that bond has been set appropriately," she said.

Romanick kept Smith's bond at $100,000. He said Smith is "a danger to the community" and also cited the "serious nature of this offense and the strength of the state’s case."

A trial is set for May 8-10.

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(Reach Blair Emerson at 701-250-8251 or Blair.Emerson@bismarcktribune.com)

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