By jason brown
August 20, 2012
A U.S. Air Force staff sergeant accused in the May 2010 shooting death of his wife’s ex-husband has been released on bail and will now stand trial in April, the man’s attorney said Monday.
Jason Ivy Rolls was released from the St. Landry Parish Jail late Friday evening on a $60,000 property bond, Rolls’ attorney, Thomas V. Alonzo, said.
Rolls is charged with manslaughter in the death of Michael Hall, a firefighter with the Krotz Springs Fire Department.
According to police statements, Rolls shot and killed Hall after Hall showed up at the couple’s home at 415 N. Levee Road, Krotz Springs, only a few hours after Rolls married Twaila Rolls, Hall’s ex-wife.
The couple contends in police statements that Hall entered their home without permission on their wedding day and assaulted both of them. Hall tackled Rolls, ripping his shirt as they fell to the ground, a police report says.
Rolls then grabbed for a nearby gun and shot Hall once in the chest, killing the unarmed man, the report says.
A grand jury charged him a little less than a year later with manslaughter, which has a prison sentence of up to 40 years.
Alonzo has called the killing “the clearest case of self-defense I’ve seen in 27 years of practicing law.”
Hall was 5 inches taller and weighed 75 pounds more than Jason Rolls.
“The size difference may have been a factor in this incident,” then assistant Krotz Springs Police Chief Chris David wrote in a police report.
Alonzo has said he plans to argue that the killing was a justifiable homicide, which is defined, according to state law, as a killing committed in self-defense by one who reasonably believes he is in imminent danger of losing his life or receiving great bodily harm, and the killing is necessary to save himself from that danger.
The statute further states that a person who is not engaged in unlawful activity and is in a place where he or she has the right to be, shall have no duty to retreat before using deadly force … and may stand his or her ground and meet force with force.
Rolls was set to stand trial in the killing Monday, but the case was continued until April 22, Alonzo said.
The state asked for a continuance in the case Thursday, arguing that prosecutors are still waiting for the FBI to return new evidence.
State District Judge Ellis Daigle agreed to allow Rolls to post a $60,000 property bond with the condition that he wear an ankle bracelet and remain on Barksdale Air Force Base, Alonzo said.
Rolls had initially been released on bail, but the bail was revoked in October after a judge ruled that he had violated conditions of bail by traveling with his brother to a gun show.
“We were relieved to get Jason out of jail,” Alonzo said. “He’s been in jail for almost a year.”
The 27th Judicial District Attorney’s Office has stated that its office does not engage in out-of-court discussions regarding pending litigation.