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A South Carolina judge has denied bond for former “American Idol” contestant, Caleb Kennedy, after he was accused of killing a man by barreling into him with his pickup truck after using a marijuana vaping device.
The musician, 17, was arrested for a felony DUI that resulted in a death, according to online records in February.
Per records, the singer was arrested on Feb. 8 at 7:21 p.m. local time. The accident occurred earlier in the afternoon.
This photo provided by Spartanburg County Jail shows Caleb Andrew Kennedy. Kennedy, a country music singer who was a finalist on TV’s “American Idol” is charged with drunken driving resulting in death, South Carolina. (Spartanburg County Jail via AP)
The country music singer will remain in jail after his arrest on a charge of driving under the influence resulting in death. Police say Kennedy drove his truck up a private driveway in Spartanburg County and struck Larry Duane Parris, 54, driving Parris into a building.
Circuit Judge Grace Gilchrist Knie ruled Friday that Kennedy would present a danger to himself and the community if he was released from jail. Knie said she might reconsider bond for Kennedy following a psychiatric evaluation in 45 days, news outlets reported.
Prosecutors at a Thursday hearing sought the bond denial and referred to a toxicology report showing Kennedy had marijuana and Prozac in his system at the time of the crash.
Kennedy competed on the 19th season of “American Idol” but abruptly left after a video surfaced depicting him standing with someone that appeared to be wearing a KKK hood. (Christopher Willard via Getty Images)
Kennedy’s attorney, Ryan Beasley, had asked the judge to set a $20,000 bond, citing Kennedy’s remorse and cooperation with law enforcement, according to the Spartanburg Herald-Journal.
Beasley told news outlets he was disappointed in the judge’s decision.
“A 17-year-old’s mental health is much better at home than in a jail,” Beasley said.
Beasley has said previously that his client had been placed on suicide watch at the jail.
Kennedy competed on the 19th season of “American Idol.” He abruptly exited the competition after a video surfaced showing Kennedy standing next to someone who appears to be wearing a Ku Klux Klan hood.
The singer allegedly crashed into a building in South Carolina, resulting in a death. (ABC/Eric McCandless)
“Hey y’all, this is gonna be a bit of a surprise, but I am no longer gonna be on American Idol,” Kennedy wrote in a statement on Instagram at the time. “There was a video that surfaced on the internet and it displayed actions that were not meant to be taken in that way. I was younger and did not think about the actions, but that’s not an excuse.”
The teen continued: “I wanna say sorry to all my fans and everyone who I have let down. I’ll be taking a little time off social media to better myself, but saying that, I know this has hurt and disappointed a lot of people and made people lose respect for me. I’m so sorry!”
Kennedy concluded by saying he will “pray that one day” he will regain the public’s trust and thanked viewers for their support.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.