WICHITA, Kan. — Ryan Newell, the wounded vet charged with conspiring to harm members of the Westboro Baptist Church, has been released from Sedgwick County Jail, Georgia Cole, spokeswoman for the district attorney's office, said today.
Newell was released on his own recognizance shortly after 2 p.m., Sedgwick County Sheriff Robert Hinshaw said, with the stipulation that he report to the VA Hospital for treatment. He was picked up by his attorney at the jail, Hinshaw said.
According to a court document, Newell's bond remains at $500,000. Being released on personal recognizance means that if he fails to appear in court, he would be responsible for that $500,000 bond. He is next scheduled to appear in Sedgwick County District Court for his preliminary hearing on Dec. 16.
A judge signed an order for his release.
Veterans from across the country had rallied in support of Newell, who is charged with conspiracy to commit aggravated battery and other crimes against members of the controversial Topeka church who often organize disruptive protests at the funerals of soldiers killed in Afghanistan and Iraq, claiming their deaths are God's retribution for the U.S. acceptance of homosexuality. The veterans say they know what he has gone through since he lost his legs in Afghanistan.