He’s the man investigators say shot and killed Master Public Safety Officer Sandy Rogers. On Monday, Joshua Tremaine Jones stood before Judge Donna Williamson for a bond hearing.
“Do you want to be screened for an attorney?” asked Judge Williamson.
“I don’t care!” Jones yelled back, grunting several times afterwards.
After mouthing profanities to the few reporters in the room, he cursed at the judge, too.
“Do you have the income to hire an attorney on your own?” she asked him.
“Does it look like it? G** d******!” Jones answered back.
It was something Cpt. Troy Elwell with Aiken County Sheriff’s Office had never seen before.
“What I saw in court today was a very disturbing individual. He appeared to show no remorse for the actions he had taken. He was disrespectful to the judge and others in the courtroom while he was there,” Elwell said.
Elwell says it’s essentially a slap in the face to an already wounded community.
“It’s a crime that can’t be undone. It’s a terrible incident. And again, he just showed that much more disrespect for everybody involved in it today,” he said.
Joshua’s father, James, was also there and acknowledged the public would view his son as a “monster”. He described his very son’s behavior as the work of Satan.
“It’s got to be the work of Satan. It’s a spirit world that is way beyond us,” he said.
James Jones said his son may possibly plead insanity. He says his son has a condition they’ve sought help to combat. Jones says Joshua was being treated at Aurora Pavilion Behavioral Health Services before he was released to his care last fall.
But the behavior today didn’t sway Elwell’s opinion.
“I don’t think I could get any stronger feelings toward him, no matter how he acts. What happened in the courtroom today really doesn’t have any effect on my feeling toward the individual,” Elwell said. Jones’ bond for the weapons charge was set at $10,000. A circuit court will have to decide the bond for the murder charge. In the rare case they do set his bond for murder, he’ll still be on hold for possible charges in Richmond County.
His father says the behavior may be because he’s off of his medications, but he wasn’t entirely sure about that.
Jones has had a troubled past. He pleaded guilty in 2009 to weapons charges and served 108 days in the Aiken County Detention Center. Just last year, he was charged with giving false information and carrying a concealed weapon. His father says he shot himself in the head last year and said son stabbed him 10 years ago. Jones was 16 years old at the time.
Turn the page to see the spectacle in court.