Bail Amount Prompts Questions, Outrage

Shock and disappointment. That's a Texas A&M student's reaction to the $37,000 bail set for the man accused of trying to rape her at gunpoint.

Christopher Montelongo, 40, was arrested Sunday after police say he broke into an A&M dorm room, put a gun to a student's head and told her he'd kill her if she didn't have sex with him. But by Sunday night, Montelongo was a free man.

That's because Brazos County Justice of the Peace Ramiro "Big Q" Quintero set Montelongo's bail at $37,000, an amount that had many in the legal community scratching their head.

"It seems seriously low," said Grimes County District Attorney Tuck McLain. "My recommendation with these types of felonies would have been 25 (thousand) on each felony."

Montelongo is charged with four offenses. Quintero set bond at $20,000 for an aggravated sexual assault charge; $7,000 for possession of a weapon in a prohibited area; and $5,000 each for criminal trespass and burglary of a habitation.

News Three looked at recent similar crimes to compare bail amounts. Last August, bail was set at $250,000 for a man charged with aggravated assault of a child and sexual assault of a child. In September, a $200,000 bail was ordered for a defendant charged with burglary with intent to commit assault. Last month, a person charged with one count of robbery from Wal Mart was held on $32,000 bail.

News Three called Quintero's office in an attempt to get a comment or explanation from the judge, but our call was not returned. Meanwhile the victim said both she and her parents are extremely upset by the seemingly low bail amount for a man who she thought was going to kill her. She refused to speak on camera saying she fears for her safety with Montelongo back on the streets.