Teens Accused of Killing Spanish Teacher Seek Lower Bond While Prosecutors Want It Raised

Willard Noble Chaiden Miller and Jeremy Everett Goodale, both 16, asked a state court judge to lower their bond, but prosecutors want it to stay at $1 million or even be raised to $2 million.

Miller and Goodale are accused of killing their high school Spanish teacher Nohema Graber in Fairfield, Iowa.

According to the Associated Press, Graber, 66, was reported missing Nov. 2. Her remains were found at a park in Fairfield, where she was known to take daily walks, later that day. Court filings reported that Graber suffered "inflicted trauma to the head."

The two boys were given separate court hearings 90 minutes apart. AP reported they gave little reaction to the proceedings, only looking forward most of the time.

Goodale's lawyer argued that he doesn't have the means to pay the bond.

"A million dollar cash-only bond, judge, is so far unobtainable that it essentially amounts to pretrial detention without bond," said Nicole Jensen, the state public defender appointed to represent Goodale.

Jensen said the most Goodale could manage was probably $10,000 at most, as his father works in construction. Goodale has no means of fleeing, as he doesn't possess a passport and driver's license, she said.

Miller's attorney Christine Branstad argued similarly. She added that the prolonged detainment could have a harmful effect on the young men and hinder their development.

She asked the judge to instead look at GPS or video monitoring while Miller's under home supervision of the adults in his family.

Both Assistant Iowa Attorney General Scott Brown and Jefferson County Attorney Chauncey Moulding referred to the brutality of the crime in their arguments. Brown said it justified keeping the bond at $1 million or increasing it to $2 million for Goodale. Moulding also asked to increase the bond for Miller.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

Willard Noble Chaiden Miller, Bond, Hearing
Jeremy Everett Goodale and Willard Noble Chaiden Miller, two southeast Iowa teenagers charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder in the death of their high school Spanish teacher, asked a state court judge to lower their bond. Above, Miller listens as his attorney Christine Branstad speaks during a bond review hearing at the Jefferson County Courthouse in Fairfield, Iowa, Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2021. Zach Boyden-Holmes/The Des Moines Register via AP

Brown asked Judge Joel Yates to take into account the details investigators have provided "concerning the planning ... the act that caused Ms. Graber's death and the treatment of her after her death is what appears to us to be also brutal."

Moulding said there is no level of outside supervision that would ensure the safety of the community. He asked the judge to increase bond to $2 million for Miller.

Graber's body was found concealed under a tarp, wheelbarrow and railroad ties at the Chautauqua Park in Fairfield, about 95 miles southeast of Des Moines.

Police said in court documents that they received a tip that Goodale posted details about planning the killing on social media. The documents indicated police investigators found clothing that appeared to contain blood at the homes of the teens.

Court documents also allege that Miller made statements regarding being at the park when Graber was killed and about providing materials used in her death and concealing the body.

Both teens attended Fairfield High School, where Graber had taught Spanish since 2012.

Yates said he would consider arguments and filed a decision on bond next week.

Court arraignments for both are also set for Monday, but their lawyers have indicated they'll likely file written arraignment documents in which they will enter a plea, eliminating the need for another court hearing.

Jeremy Everett Goodale, Bond, Hearing
Judge Joel Yates said he would file a decision on the bond next week for Jeremy Everett Goodale and Willard Noble Chaiden Miller. Above, Goodale and his attorney Nicole Jensen attend a bond review hearing at the Jefferson County Courthouse in Fairfield, Iowa, Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2021. Zach Boyden-Holmes/The Des Moines Register via AP