A Romeoville man who’s been in jail for more than six years on a first-degree murder charge has asked a judge to either lower his bond or give him a recognizance bond.
Mark Ballard, 48, has been in jail since Aug. 11, 2014, when he was arrested in connection with the death of Richard Pollack, 55, of Romeoville. Ballard and his son Adam Ballard, 21, both were charged with killing Pollack by striking him in the head with a baseball bat.
Adam Ballard has been on parole since June 7, 2019, after he pleaded guilty to second-degree murder for his role in Pollack's death. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison, but he only had to serve half that time, most of which he already completed while he was in jail awaiting trial.
Mark Ballard recently has been representing himself, and he filed a motion Tuesday asking Judge Amy Bertani-Tomczak for either a recognizance bond or to reduce his bond to $300,000.
His bond is set at $2.5 million, and he needs to post $250,000 for his release from jail.
In his motion, Mark Ballard argues he’s never been convicted or prosecuted for “any type of violent crime” and that his current bond is “excessive” because he “lacks the funds or means to meet the financial requirements of the set bail.”
Bertani-Tomczak previously lowered Mark Ballard's bond from $5 million to $2.5 million on July 3, 2019.
Mark Ballard’s motion claimed he’s been in a relationship for 22 years and he’s the sole provider of his household.
“If he remains in custody, he will lose everything he worked for the last approximately 20 years,” according to the motion.
Mark Ballard also argued in the motion that there have been delays in his case because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“On the 10th day of November 2020, defendant never got the chance to address any of his motions, receive the discovery from defense stand-by counsel, nor had the opportunity to address defendant’s motion for bond reduction due to the COVID-19 epidemic,” according to the motion.
Mark Ballard was 42 and his son was 15 at the time of incident that led to Pollack’s death. Officers responded to call of a large fight in progress about 2 a.m. Aug. 10, 2014, in the 400 block of Tallman Avenue, Romeoville police said.
Former Romeoville Police Chief Mark Turvey said there were several participants who were armed with baseball bats.
Pollack, who suffered serious injuries, police said, was taken to AMITA Health Adventist Medical Center in Bolingbrook, where he was pronounced dead.
Mark and Adam Ballard were located in the area and arrested on charges of first-degree murder.