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A brief legal history of Bo Dukes, the man accused of hiding Tara Grinstead's body

Courtrooms are not unfamiliar places for Dukes

As far as 13WMAZ knows, Bo Dukes' history in the court system began back in 2013 when he pleaded guilty to stealing more than $150,000 from the Army.

He served 27 months in federal prison for that crime and was sentenced to 3 years of probation.

In 2017, he was arrested and charged with hiding Tara Grinstead's body. Later that year, he was also charged with lying to the Georgia Bureau of Investigations in connection with that case.

However, Dukes has only been convicted on the federal theft charge.

Attorney Lars Anderson says that limits the role the Tara Grinstead-related charges may have played in Dukes' federal case proceedings.

"By the constitution as we all know the great phrase 'you're innocent until you're proven guilty,'" said Anderson.

Still, in November of 2018, a federal judge ordered Dukes back to prison after he ruled that dukes violated the terms of his federal probation.

So why was Dukes out in Bonaire on New Year's Day of 2019 when he allegedly assaulted two women?

It comes down to a two-word legal term: voluntary surrender.

The judge decided Dukes had to go back to prison but didn't have to do so right away. Instead, he allowed Dukes to report to custody at a later date to be determined.

Attorney Frank Hogue said it's a calculated risk judges make.

"Does this guy have a record of not obeying court rules? Is the risk a good one that he's going to stay out, not get into any trouble, not cause any harm to anybody?" said Hogue. "(Is he going to) abide by the rules and then show up when he's supposed to?"

Anderson and Hogue both stressed this is not a particularly unusual thing to see at the federal level.

Based on their experience as attorneys, they also said the judge likely was informed of Dukes' Grinstead-related charges at the time he decided to grant Dukes voluntary surrender. However, they couldn't say that with 100% certainty since neither are part of the case.

Thursday night, the U.S. Attorney's Office announced in light of Dukes' charges in Bonaire, a federal judge has revoked Dukes' voluntary surrender which means when U.S. marshals locate Dukes, he'll head directly back to federal prison.

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