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Watch now: Man accused of trying to kill Decatur cop unhappy his preliminary hearing gets delayed


Please be aware this video includes the use of profanity. Decatur Police Department body cam video shows shots fired incident involving police officer and suspect.

DECATUR — Gregory W. Lewis, the man accused of trying to kill a Decatur Police officer who was forced to shoot back at him, appeared in court and looked surprised that a preliminary hearing in his case wasn’t ready to go ahead.

Lewis, 47, was in Macon County Circuit Court on Wednesday where prosecutors said a detective involved in the case was out of state and not available to give evidence.

Macon County State’s Attorney Scott Rueter asked Judge Rodney Forbes to reschedule the preliminary hearing for Feb. 24. Defense attorney Dave Ellison made no objection but Lewis, sitting next to him in a Macon County Jail jumpsuit, looked surprised and tried to tell the judge that he did have an objection to the delay.

But Forbes cut him off abruptly: “You have an attorney; you talk to your attorney,” said the judge. “You do not address me. You talk to your attorney.”

Lewis, who shook his head from side to side, raised no further objection and the preliminary hearing was rescheduled back a week. He is facing charges he tried to murder patrol officer Michael Lawary when the officer confronted him near a home on West Cerro Gordo Street early on Jan. 29.

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Police say they had been summoned by a terrified homeowner after Lewis allegedly fired a handgun, the same weapon he is then accused of pointing at Lawary and opening fire.

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Body camera footage from the officer captured the violence and while Lewis is heard crying out “they shot me,” neither he nor Lawary were injured in the exchange of bullets.

Rueter then told the judge that prosecutors were ready to proceed with two other preliminary hearings against Lewis, however. Forbes subsequently called cases dating from Dec. 6 and Jan. 10 alleging Lewis had attacked the same woman — his girlfriend of seven months — on each of those occasions.

In the Dec. 6 case, Rueter heard evidence from patrol officer Rydick Braden who said the victim complained of being strangled to the point where she had lost consciousness.

And in the Jan. 10 incident, Lewis is alleged to have accused the woman of infidelity before strangling her again and holding her down on a bed while using a kitchen knife to stab the mattress next to her head and threatening to kill her. Giving evidence in that case, Officer Lucas Bray said the woman told police she had then been punched repeatedly in the head and the officer testified he had observed injuries that matched her version of events.

Lewis entered not guilty pleas to a total of two charges of aggravated domestic battery involving strangulation, one charge of aggravated battery and four counts of domestic battery.

Forbes put the cases on the trial list of Judge Jeffrey Geisler and scheduled a pretrial hearing for April 22. Lewis remains in custody with bail set at $2.14 million, meaning he would have to post a bond of $214,000 to get out of jail.

Mug shots from the Herald & Review

Contact Tony Reid at (217) 421-7977. Follow him on Twitter: @TonyJReid


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Lewis entered not guilty pleas on one charge of attempted murder and another charge of aggravated discharge of a firearm at a peace officer. He also denied further charges of being an armed habitual criminal, being a felon in possession of a weapon and vehicle theft.

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