$1 million bond set for accused Will Smith shooter

(Source: Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office)

NEW ORLEANS (WWL) – A judge set a $1 million bond amount Sunday for the accused shooter of former Saints player Will Smith.

Cardell Hayes, 28, made a short court appearance Sunday afternoon around 5 p.m., fewer than 24-hours after investigators said he shot former defensive end Smith, according to WWLTV.com

Hayes walked into the courtroom in an orange jumpsuit, along with three prisoners in other cases. Hayes’ case was the first to be heard.

According to a New Orleans Police Department warrant, Smith was shot in the back and right torso late Saturday night. NOPD Superintendent Michael Harrison said at a press conference Sunday homicide detectives found Smith partially inside his vehicle. Harrison added the football player was found dead on the scene.

Eyewitness News Legal Analyst Chic Foret said prominent attorney John Fuller represented Hayes for Sunday’s hearing. Fuller said Hayes has no prior felony convictions, is the father to a 5-year-old son and owns his own towing company. Fuller also stressed that his client called 911, and stayed on the scene until police arrived.

According to Matt Sledge of The New Orleans Advocate, outside the courtroom, Fuller said the case is more complicated. Fuller claimed Hayes’ Hummer was struck in a hit-and-run preceding the shooting. However, Fuller declined to say whose vehicle he believes initially struck Hayes. Fuller also told The Advocate Hayes and Smith did not know each other and a 2005 NOPD shooting of Hayes’ father played no role in Saturday’s incident.

Hayes is expected back in court Monday.

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