Game Warden Appears in Court

By: Lindsey Ward Email
By: Lindsey Ward Email

June 19, 2007

25-year-old Robert Orrin Ham III has been charged in the shooting death of 16-year-old Allen Cochran.

A judge decided on Tuesday morning that Ham will remain free on a $5,000 bond.

Back in January, Ham shot and killed Cochran after the teen allegedly tried to run over him with his car.

In court Tuesday, Ham's attorney told the judge Ham has had no previous criminal record, not even a speeding ticket, and that he is not a flight risk.

The attorney also added that two weeks prior to the shooting, Cochran had made threats of violence toward other high school students, including the missing 15-year-old girl police believed Cochran was involved with at the time of the shooting.

At that time, a judge ordered emergency custody of the teen after he declared Cochran an eminent danger to himself and others. He was then taken to UVa Medical Center for a mental evaluation. Cochran was released, but ordered to seek additional help. It is unknown if he ever received or sought that ordered treatment.

In his statement to the judge, Ham's attorney said the game warden believed he was going to die when Cochran tried to run him over, and the shooting was an act of self defense.

Ham's next court appearance will be July 24th where he will enter his plea.

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