PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – It seemed open and shut. A man, charged in connection with an Aug. 23 shooting, would be held in custody pending trial due to failures to appear and his past record.

That was until Uvinculous Richmond spoke up and started to plead his case. Richmond, 41, told Peoria County Judge Sean Donahue that he was in prison in August when the shooting in the 500 block of East Illinois Street occurred.

What followed was a 10-minute recital of what happened. In essence, Richmond was arguing that his failures to appear in court in two pending Peoria County cases was because he was in prison for violating his parole regarding a Woodford County driving case.

And then, it seems he was picked up somewhere – he said it was on the highway – near St. Louis and taken back to prison to serve another stint behind bars.

It seems being locked up might possibly work in Richmond’s favor.

He’s already facing charges in prior cases for drugs and weapons and was charged Tuesday with aggravated battery and possession of a weapon by a felon in connection with the August shooting.

According to court records, Richmond allegedly a shot a person in the “gut” after that person and another man saw him trying to poke at a small dog under a car in their driveway. The victim said he and his friend were concerned with how Richmond was poking at the dog and told him so.

Richmond allegedly pulled out a gun and opened fire, a Peoria County prosecutor said in open court.

Donahue was going to find that Richmond was a threat to the community and a flight risk and thus be held pending trial. Such findings are necessary if a person is to be held in custody in the post-No Cash Bail world of Illinois.

But then Richmond started speaking. Normally, when a person who is in custody starts talking to a judge, it doesn’t tend to end well but in this case, Richmond created enough doubt to have Donahue “pass” on his case and take it tomorrow.

He’ll remain in jail, however, as he has outstanding warrants from February when he was supposed to go to trial that need to be resolved.