By Alton Worley II, Angela Bohon, Web Staff
HAMPTON, Va. (WTKR) – A preliminary hearing was held Monday morning for Cory Bigsby.
Cory is the father of 4-year-old Hampton boy Codi Bigsby, who was reported missing by his father on January 31, 2022.
Cory Bigsby was arrested for multiple child neglect charges that are not related to Codi’s disappearance.
After more than an hour and a half in the courtroom, the judge ruled there is enough probable cause to move forward with the child neglect charges. He was denied yet another bond request and the judge set a trial date.
Cory Bigsby was at the preliminary hearing. There were about 50 people in the courtroom. Members of his family could be heard crying. They later told us it was hard to see him looking the way he did and that he had lost quite a lot of weight.
Four witnesses were called Monday by the Commonwealth. Those included the lead detective on the case, Detective Steven Rodey, a loss prevention manager at Walmart, and two managers at a car dealership where they say Bigsby purchased a new SUV.
Detective Daniel Smith was originally set to be a witness, but he was not called Monday.
That date in question was December 13, and the Commonwealth argued they have proof that Bigsby was gone for more than six hours to buy the new car and said he left Codi and his 2-year-old during that time. They also brought up January 25 when they said he went to a Wal-Mart.
His lawyer, Amina Matheny-Willard, says in Virginia, there’s no clear rule on the age when children can be left at home and that, “obviously he thought it was lawful.”
Detective Rodey said in court Monday that during interviews Bigsby said he was sole caregiver of his four children and that he typically left them at home while they were napping. When asked why, Rodey said Bigsby responded that they were too much of a handful and that getting a sitter never dawned on him.
She asked for his charges to be reduced from felony charges to misdemeanors and told News 3 afterward that she’s still fighting for a change.
While at the hearing Bigsby’s attorney filed a fifth motion to the courts to reconsider bond and was denied again.
“My belief is that the reason he’s still in custody is that the Hampton Police Department and the Commonwealth Attorney perpetuated this narrative that he’s a person of interest and there have been no charges. So it’s unfortunate that they used the emotion of not only the community but the judge to ensure that he remained in custody,” Amina Matheny-Willard, Bigsby’s lawyer said.
Willard argued Bigsby has already spent six months in jail and said “any additional incarceration is unjust.”
Bigsby’s cousin also spoke with News 3 regarding Cory’s appearance in court.
“Just to see him looking rough like that, he lost a lot of weight. It broke me down. It broke me down. Cory was always a clean-cut guy, shaved head. To see him looking scruffy like that, he’s aging,” the cousin stated.
These charges are separate from Codi’s disappearance, but family members tell us they do feel it has affected the process.
Meantime, officials say the other children are now in foster care.
This story was originally published June 13, 2022 by WTKR in Norfolk, an E.W. Scripps Company.