Just minutes into Thursday morning’s hearing, attorneys for Brandon Theesfeld, the 21-year-old University of Mississippi student charged in the murder of fellow student Ally Kostial, withdrew their request for a bond hearing, saying they had received “new information.” They are opting for a psychiatric evaluation.
Attorneys for Theesfeld met with District Attorney Ben Creekmore yesterday, informing the state of their intention to withdraw the request and proceed with a psychiatric evaluation, pending approval of Judge Andrew Howorth.
Both Howorth and Creekmore referenced the considerable length of time a psychiatric evaluation takes.
“I know it’s an issue. Everybody is aware of that,” Creekmore said. He added that Theesfeld will likely be evaluated at the state hospital in Whitfield, in Rankin County.
Creekmore confirmed that Thursday’s proceedings did not change their case, and the prosecution will continue presenting the case on Aug. 27, where a grand jury will decide whether or not to indict Theesfeld.
Tony Farese, co-counsel for Theesfeld, did not comment on the nature of the new information but confirmed that they maintain his innocence and are proceeding with a plea of not guilty.
“I’m hoping that everybody does their job and justice is served,” Farese said.
Theesfeld was in the courthouse for approximately five minutes, confirming that he wants to proceed with the psychiatric evaluation, before being led out of the Lafayette County Courthouse back to the Lafayette County Detention Center, where he has been held since July 22.
Family and supporters of Ally Kostial were also in attendance. Friends of Kostial stood outside of the courthouse holding signs reading “Justice for Ally” and “Today is for Ally, not Br*nd*n.”
Kristi Kelley, Kostial’s cousin, offered a statement from the family following the proceedings.
“Ally’s family is deeply grateful for the prudent work accomplished by the Memphis police, the Lafayette County Sheriff’s office, the Lafayette County Coroner’s office, the Ole Miss community, and the many others who worked tirelessly over the past few weeks on this case. Our hearts go out to all of those touched by Ally’s positive spirit and passion for life, who are now feeling sorrow. We pray for strength in the coming days and are thankful for the friends, neighbors, coworkers and many others who have supported us.”