While being beaten to death, mistaken for a man his alleged attackers believed had molested a young girl, Sylvester Harden Jr. screamed, “I didn’t do this. I have kids. It’s not me,” a Bibb County prosecutor said at a Thursday hearing.
Ceyunta Cater, one of three people charged with murder in Harden’s 2015 death, stood in a Bibb jail courtroom Thursday, asking a judge to lower his bond. In jail since Feb. 19, 2015, his bond had been set at $275,000.
His attorney, John Carter, said the case has been postponed from the trial calendar because he and the prosecutor assigned to the case have been “diligently working, trying to resolve” it.
Authorities have said an 11-year-old girl called family members Feb. 19, 2015, saying 30-year-old Levi Moss had showed her a pornographic video on his cellphone and molested her.
The girl’s grandmother and other family reached out to relatives in Macon, trying to find someone to go get the child.
The prosecution previously has said Moss told authorities two masked men with guns went into Harden’s Nisbet Avenue home just before 9 a.m. that day and beat Harden unconscious. Harden, 40, died hours later at a local hospital.
Harden’s four children, all 8 or younger at the time, were at his house during the beating.
Thursday, while arguing against Cater’s bond being reduced, prosecutor Robert Cabe said Cater used a gun during the beating.
Carter, who said Cater was working at a convenience store before his arrest, while also studying to get a GED and commercial driver’s license, said his client isn’t a flight risk.
He is a lifelong Macon resident and has no past criminal record, Carter said.
At the end of the brief hearing, the judge agreed to reduce Cater’s bond to $125,000, the same amount determined for Butler, who’s previously been released from jail.
Bibb County Superior Court records show Moss, Harden’s cousin who was accused of molesting the girl, pleaded guilty to child molestation in May and was sentenced to 15 years, five of them in prison.
Information from Telegraph archives was used in this report.