Andrea Sneiderman bond ruling expected on Friday


Myajc.com

See more photos from Thursday’s bond hearing and from Andrea Sneiderman’s sentencing in August.

Andrea Sneiderman will have to wait at least one more day before learning whether the judge who sent her to prison will release her to house arrest.

The Dunwoody widow is currently serving a five-year sentence at the Arrendale State Prison in northeast Georgia after being convicted on charges of perjury and hindering the investigation into the November 2010 fatal shooting of her husband, Rusty, by her former supervisor at GE Energy, Hemy Neuman.

At Thursday’s bond hearing, Sneiderman’s new attorney, Brian Steel, argued that she passed all the tests required for an appeal bond. The state concurred that Sneiderman does not pose a substantial danger to the community and is not a threat to intimidate witnesses but disagreed that she is not a flight risk or that her appeal is not frivolous.

“She has accepted no responsibility for her crimes,” said DeKalb County Assistant District Attorney Anna Cross. “She has every motivation to evade and flee justice and she has the means to do it.”

Steel said Sneiderman would not leave her two children or uproot them.

“There is no evidence that she is a risk to flee,” Steel said, adding that her children “are everything to Mrs. Sneiderman.”

Steel said his client has a part-time job waiting for her if granted bond.

“That speaks to the character of Mrs. Sneiderman,” he said.

So does her conviction on nine felony counts, according to the prosecution.

“She does not feel bound by the rules that apply to everyone else,” Cross said.

A decision is expected on Friday. If the appeal bond is granted, Sneiderman will end up serving less than four months of her prison sentence. She would be placed under house arrest and reside with her parents at their Johns Creek home.

Friends and family filled the courtroom to show their support for Sneiderman, dressed in jailhouse-issue orange togs, her legs shackled.

“She has value outside the prison system and she’d assist in her appeal,” Steel said.

That appeal is likely to focus on the testimony of Melanie White, a friend of Neuman’s who testified that he told her he was involved in a sexual relationship with Sneiderman.

“This case was heavily litigated,” Steel said. “There is a potential great issue here: Melanie White’s testimony.”

Sneiderman’s former attorneys argued to exclude White’s testimony, saying the Dunwoody Realtor was not particularly close to Neuman and that Neuman’s word could not trusted.

“He is a certifiable, judicially determined lunatic,” defense attorney J. Tom Morgan said at the time.

Sneiderman spent nearly a year under house arrest after she was charged with conspiring to kill her husband in Aug. 2012. Those charges were dropped just before the trial commenced in late July.

Earlier this week, Sneiderman reached a settlement with her former in-laws on a wrongful death suit filed in April 2012. Details of the agreement were not made available.

Sneiderman has a parole hearing scheduled for April. Steel said Thursday he would stop the parole process if she’s granted bond.