Anthony Oddone was released from custody shortly after 4 p.m. on Monday at the Arthur M. Cromarty Court Complex in Riverside.
He was met outside the courthouse by the attorneys who won his freedom, Sarita Kedia and Mark Wolinsky, and by a small crowd of family, friends and supporters huddled in the parking lot under a steady drizzle.
“I’m just very grateful to be with the friends and family and loved ones that supported me through this whole thing,” Mr. Oddone said, outside the courthouse after his release. “Thank you, guys. Thanks, everybody, so much.”
Mr. Oddone’s release came after an unnamed supporter, or supporters, posted $500,000 cash bail as tender for his return to court. He was released into the custody of his mother, Laura Oddone, and must reside at her home in Middletown, near Poughkeepsie. He was barred by the judge from leaving the state or country.
He is due to appear back in court on February 5 to begin the second phase of his prosecution in the death of Southampton native Andrew Reister. His indictment on charges of second degree murder, filed after Mr. Reister died three days after a fight with Mr. Oddone at the Southampton Publick House, were vacated by Judge Hinrichs on Monday and a grand jury was ordered to review new charge of first degree manslaughter, the charge he was convicted of by a jury in 2009.
Judge Hinrichs approved Mr. Oddone’s request for bail to be set at $500,000 or $1 million bond.
Mr. Wolinsky said he believes Mr. Oddone will be released sometime today to the custody of his mother, Laura Oddone of Middletown.
The D.A.’s office had asked that Mr. Oddone not be released on bail, arguing that he was a flight risk, but said that if bail was granted, it should be $5 million cash or $15 million bond.
The bail hearing will resume at 2:15 p.m. due to a question about Mr. Oddone’s passport.
The original indictment on murder has been vacated, the case will be returned to a grand jury for a new indictment.
“All I can say is, I’ll be glad to have him home,” Ms. Oddone said.
Anthony Oddone will be in a Riverside courtroom on Monday morning where his defense attorney will ask a judge to allow him to post bail and be released from prison while he awaits retrial in the 2008 killing of Andrew Reister.
The hearing will be before Supreme Court Justice C. Randall Hinrichs, the judge who presided over Mr. Oddone’s 2009 murder trial, at the Arthur M. Cromarty courthouse in Riverside at 11 a.m.
After his arrest in 2008, facing murder charges for killing Mr. Reister during a struggle with the part-time bouncer at the Southampton Publick House, Mr. Oddone was ordered held without bail. But the 32-year old former golf caddy now faces less serious charges and a limited amount of time in prison should he again be found guilty, factors that some veteran defense attorneys said this week could swing the chances of his being granted bail in his favor.
In his first trial, which lasted more than two months and saw more than 50 witnesses take the stand, Mr. Oddone was acquitted of second degree murder and found guilty of first degree manslaughter, which would now be the most serious charge he would face if a second trial is held. Additionally, his original sentence of 22 years, issued by Judge Hinrichs, was reduced by an appellate court to 17 years, of which he’s already served a little more than five years, dating back to the night of his arrest. With good behavior Mr. Oddone could face as little as nine more years in prison.
In the weeks before the first trial, Judge Hinrichs denied a petition by Mr. Oddone’s attorney to allow members of the golf club he caddied at, The Bridge, to post $1 million bond and take responsibility for Mr. Oddone’s whereabouts during the trial. Members of the golf club are also believed to have footed the bill for his defense and one member, attorney Marc Wolinsky, handled his appeals pro bono.
Mr. Oddone will be represented on Monday by Sarita Kedia, who defended him at his first trial.
Earlier this month the first degree manslaughter conviction was overturned by the state’s highest appeals court on the basis of Judge Hinrichs refusal to allow defense attorneys to remind a witness of an earlier statement she had made about the fatal struggle in August 2008 at the Southampton Publick House.
For most of the time from his arrest until his sentencing in April 2010, Mr. Oddone was held at the New York City jail on Rikers Island, at his attorney’s request, because Mr. Reister had worked as a guard at the Suffolk County Jail in Riverside. The state corrections system website no longer shows Mr. Oddone in custody at Green Haven Correctional Facility but a spokesman for the District Attorney’s office said he did not know where Mr. Oddone would be held this weekend prior to Monday’s court appearance or where he would be held if he is denied bail until a second trial or plea deal is reached.