A Dothan man whose murder charge was dropped after witnesses failed to show up for trial has been re-indicted.
A Houston County grand jury indicted Brandon Allen Ransom in the 2016 ambush shooting of 26-year-old Christopher “Chris” Bailey at Plum’s Lounge; Ransom was arrested without incident along Park Avenue just before noon Tuesday by a U.S. Marshal task force.
“We received information regarding Ransom’s whereabouts, and we located him a short-time later,” Dothan Police Sgt. Jason Adkins said.
Ransom, 31, was charged with Bailey’s murder in the July 30, 2016, shooting. Houston County Judge Michael Conaway dismissed Ransom’s charges in September 2018 because all state witnesses failed to cooperate by attending the trial.
Circuit Judge John John Steensland III previously served as Ransom’s defense attorney. Steensland previously told the Dothan Eagle he believed the state would try to locate the witnesses with the hope of retrying the case before a grand jury.
Court records state Dothan Police Investigator Jared Bladen previously testified during Ransom’s bail hearing, saying police had two eyewitnesses who identified Ransom as the shooter in an “unprovoked ambush attack” outside a local nightclub that left Bailey dead.
Bladen said Ransom fatally shot Bailey during an ambush as he walked back to his car outside the Plum’s Lounge nightclub located on Montgomery Highway. He said police responded to what was initially reported as a critical firearm assault outside the nightclub, and arrived to find the victim dead in the parking lot.
Bailey suffered seven gunshot wounds during the shooting, including one to the head, two to the back, two more to the chest, and another to the arm and leg, Bladen testified.
During Ransom’s bail hearing, Steensland said his client is a disabled veteran of the U.S. military, diagnosed with PTSD.
Since Steensland has been seated as a circuit judge, Ransom must seek a new defense attorney.
Ransom was released from jail Jan. 16 on a $60,000 bond.