Judge grants bond to Basil Eleby, suspect in I-85 bridge fire

FULTON COUNTY, Ga. — The man charged with starting a fire under the Interstate-85 bridge has been granted bond.

After waiving arraignment and being granted a $10,000 signature bond, Basil Eleby is preparing to leave the jail with a substance abuse counselor.

It's a part of one bond condition laid out in court Tuesday morning, others include seeking gainful employment and staying 1,000 feet from the fire scene unless he's with his counsel.

Police said Eleby set fire to an upholstered chair, which ignited materials under I-85. A case warrant said that he told police he went under the bridge to smoke crack cocaine.

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Eleby now has a coalition of defense lawyers and civil rights activists supporting his case. They said the basileleby.org website has led to additional witnesses they plan to use in the case.

"I think all of the lawyers here have received e-mails from volunteers, from people who believe they can serve as witnesses,” said defense attorney Mawuli Davis. “So we think the work of the coalition helped us gather information that we think will be very helpful down the road. Very helpful."

Eleby is set to return to court in a status hearing that scheduled for June 16.

I-85 fire suspect in court

UPDATE: Judge grants Basil Eleby, man charged with starting fire that led to I-85 bridge collapse, $10,000 signature bond. http://2wsb.tv/2nZdGjx --- Basil Eleby, the man accused of setting the fire that caused the I-85 collapse expected in court.

Posted by WSB-TV on Tuesday, April 18, 2017