Bond set for suspect in tot's death

Relates to:
Date: 2009-05-31
Source: Forsyth News
Man was boyfriend of child's adopted mother

Bond has been set at $350,000 for a 39-year-old convicted sex offender charged in the February beating death of a toddler.

Christopher Brian Gilreath has been held at the Forsyth County Jail since the child’s death. He faces charges of aggravated battery, cruelty to children and felony murder.

Gilreath remained in custody late Friday, a jail spokesman said.

At a bond hearing earlier in the day, Forsyth County Superior Court Judge Jeffrey S. Bagley also required Gilreath, if released, to wear an ankle monitor.

Chief Assistant District Attorney Sandra Partridge noted Gilreath may be a flight risk.

“He has no ties to this community and that’s a huge, huge issue,” she said.

The child, Joshua Pinckney, was found dead Feb. 13 at 3525 Catalina Drive, where he lived with Gilreath, his adoptive mother and another adopted child.

Authorities have said Gilreath was the boyfriend of the mother, Miriam Pinckney. The couple moved into the house in December from South Carolina. Prior to that, Gilreath may have lived in Pennsylvania.

Partridge said the child’s cause of death was blunt force trauma as a result of “multiple blows to the head.”

She said Gilreath was the only adult home with the boy and the other child at the time of his death.

Patridge said Pinckney is also under investigation, but has not been charged.

Gilreath was also charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and failure to register as a sex offender in Georgia.

Because he was not indicted within 90 days of the charges, Gilreath was entitled to a bond.

At Friday's hearing, his attorney, John Rife, asked that bond be set at $100,000. Partridge requested $500,000 bond.

Rife presented to the court documentation from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation that reportedly showed Gilreath was no longer required to register as a sex offender.

Rife said Gilreath had been convicted of statutory rape.

According to information published on the TBI’s Web site, convicted sex offenders may request to terminate the registration requirement 10 years after completion of their sentences. In Gilreath's case, that was September.

Partridge had not seen the paperwork before Friday and said she would have to review it.

Gilreath’s family, including his parents, wife and two children, came from Tennessee for the hearing.

His father, Kenneth Gilreath, testified that he could afford to post Gilreath’s bond. He also said the family would be able to help Gilreath pay for a residence in Forsyth County.

“We could do it,” he said.

E-mail Julie Arrington at juliearrington@forsythnews.com.

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