GREENSBORO, N.C. — 27-year-old Brandon Bentley was released from custody after being held under a $100,000 secured bond.
Bentley is being charged with multiple weapons offenses after police say he brought several guns onto North Carolina A&T State University's campus on March 26th.
Mental health status, residency, and how many weapons Bentley had all went into the decision to set Bentley's bond at $100,000.
Local attorneys say, due to the bond guidelines, the bond could've been a lot lower.
Police said 27-year-old Brandon Bentley was arrested after bringing weapons to NCA&T's campus.
Police said Bentley was violent, making threats to law enforcement, and chasing unarmed security guards on the campus.
Officers said they found several weapons including handguns, shotguns, a crossbow, a machete, hatchets, knives, and among other weapons.
They said there were also more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition.
With that amount of weapons parents and students say they are concerned that this, in their opinion, was a low bond for Bentley.
JazMia Victorian is a student at NCA&T, she said, “Are you guys really taking this seriously? I also felt that I just know that people of color have gotten in trouble for less charges and had no bond.”
Roland Taylor is a parent of an NCA&T student and said, “Regardless, you caught him with this stuff on a school campus and you decide that it’s a good idea to let him go, why?”
Attorney Patrick Apple explained, saying the bond guidelines were set back in 2020 by the Chief District and Superior court judges.
Those guidelines give minimum to maximum bond amounts based on the charge.
In this instance, the largest charge that Bentley is facing is a Class G felony for having explosives on education property.
Now, according to those bond guidelines, the maximum bond amount for that offense is $15,000.
So, essentially the judge in the case of Brandon Bentley increased the bond amount significantly.
"This is almost, I was running the numbers, a little over six times the recommended bond guidelines," Apple continues, "whether he’s a threat to the public or even himself the court is going to make sure that those concerns are addressed before he’s released, and when somebody has a secured bond like this and they say that there needs to be a mental health assessment that’s telling the public, we understand the concern here, we see it and we want to make sure that this person gets help so they aren’t a threat to the community or themselves.”
District Attorney Avery Crump said the DA's office also shares safety concerns however, they do not set bonds.
Bond amounts are at the sole discretion of magistrates and judges. In this particular case, during the first appearance, the DA’S office requested a very high bond and the judge set it at $100,000.