It’s going to cost a Chester man charged with murder in the death of a police officer more money if he wants to be released from jail.
On Monday afternoon, Judge Richard Brown ruled in favor of a state motion to increase the bail for Jason M. Stoker. Originally held on $250,000 bail in connection with the Oct. 28 death of Chester police officer James Brockmeyer, Stoker’s bail was increased to $750,000 by Brown. In order to be released from custody, Stoker would have to put up at least $75,000 in cash.
Randolph County State’s Attorney Jeremy Walker sought the increase in bail when he filed a first-degree murder charge against Stoker on Nov. 10.
Stoker faces four other felony charges in connection with the incident, including reckless homicide and three counts of aggravated fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer. If convicted of the murder charge, Stoker faces a mandatory prison sentence of between 20 and 60 years.
Brockmeyer died from injuries he suffered in a crash after he was pursuing Stoker on Oct. 28. The crash happened around 10 p.m. on Palestine Road in rural Randolph County, about 2 miles north of Chester. Brockmeyer had been on the Chester police force for only 10 months. A 2012 Chester High School graduate, Brockmeyer previously served as a volunteer firefighter and worked in the city’s gas department. His Nov. 3 funeral drew police officers from around the area and included a more than 20-mile procession in and around Chester.
Stoker, 34, is being held in the Randolph County Jail. He appeared in Randolph County Circuit Court on Monday with his lawyer, James Kelley, of Sparta. Stoker’s next scheduled court date is a Dec. 5 preliminary hearing in front of Brown.