Atlanta attorney Claud “Tex” McIver is likely to be released on bond from jail next week, providing him a four-month respite from incarceration before his murder trial begins March 5, his attorney said Friday.
“The time will help Tex,” said lead defense attorney William Hill.
Hill said McIver, 74, has lost upwards of 30 pounds and developed a persistent rash during his six months in jail. McIver has been locked up since April when he violated his first bond by keeping a gun in the sock drawer of the condo.
The judge’s bond order on Wednesday specified “no firearms, loaded or unloaded, in his residence. This includes all sock drawers.”
Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney delayed the trial, which was set for Oct. 30, because both prosecutors and defense attorneys have yet to review potentially critical evidence. But the judge insisted that McIver be granted bond during the interim.
“Breakdown” podcast: “The McIver Murder Case”
Hill said final details are being worked out to allow McIver’s release from the Alpharetta annex of the Fulton County Jail. He said McIver is having some difficulty raising the $75,000 that he must post for bail. That represents 10 percent of the $750,000 bond Judge McBurney set this week.
McIver is charged with murder in the shooting death of his wife, Diane, on the night of Sept. 25, 2016, as they drove along Piedmont Avenue. McIver says the shooting was accidental.
Other conditions of his release include that he remain under house arrest in Fulton County; wear an ankle monitor; and abide by sharp restrictions on his ability to leave home. McIver is expected to reside in his luxury condo in Buckhead.
Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard, issuing a rare statement on the McIver case, said this week that his office sought additional time to review some 30 banker’s boxes of documents and computer materials seized from McIver’s condo and his wife’s storage unit.
He noted that the boxes have been sequestered since April pending a review by an outside counsel to separate those documents protected under client-attorney privilege.
Howard said he opposed the release of McIver on bond.
“If we were required to accept the bond in order to review these items, then so be it,” Howard said. “The state contends that this evidence is crucial to the trial of (McIver).”
Prosecutors have said they believe McIver purposely killed his wife for financial reasons, and they believe Diane McIver, herself a successful business executive, had crafted an updated will that either removed or reduced McIver’s share of her fortune. No such will has emerged.
Hill, the defense attorney, said the prosecution has intentionally delayed progress on the case, including a last-minute release of some 90,000 emails extracted from Diane McIver’s work computer.
Howard said the emails had been received in an unreadable format, and the DA’s office had to purchase software to convert them to a readable form. After the conversion, the emails were immediately presented to the defense, he said.
The McIver case is the subject of Breakdown, a podcast by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The first episode launched this week, with the second one coming on Monday.