A judge set bail at $100,000 Tuesday morning for a man accused of seriously wounding a veteran on a public bus in December, saying she needed to protect the public from “a jerk like him.”
Nathaniel Graves, 26, of Las Vegas appeared in the courtroom of Justice of the Peace Ann Zimmerman.
Video from the bus showed the victim — a military veteran in his 60s — getting punched in the face multiple times after confronting a man who put his feet across his lap, police said.
The victim had to have his right eye removed because of his injuries, police said.
In setting bail, Zimmerman said that if Graves does get released, he is barred from riding any Regional Transportation Commission bus. She also ordered that he be placed on electronic monitoring.
“The other factor that the court should consider is whether or not he is a danger to the community,” Zimmerman said. “People should be able to get on an RTC bus that they ride to work, they ride to school, they ride to a doctor’s appointment, they ride to the grocery store, and they shouldn’t have to meet a jerk like him when they get on the bus who doesn’t want to put his feet down from the seat to make room for another passenger. People shouldn’t have to put up with that.”
Defense attorney Garrett Ogata said a plea of “not guilty” was entered on Graves’ behalf.
Graves, Ogata said, has lived in Las Vegas his whole life and has a full-time job. Ogata initially asked that Graves be released from the Clark County Detention Center on his own recognizance, but Zimmerman said, “That’s not going to happen.”
Ogata said the video of the incident does not tell the whole story.
“We are going to be defending this 100 percent because the facts are not what it seems from what was relayed on the video,” the attorney said. “The video depicts someone who is just randomly hitting somebody, and that’s just not the case. We have defenses on this case that need to be brought forth.”
Ogata said he wants the full video, “not just the snippet of five seconds” made public.
“The other four occurrences, that the man was touching him and doing things to him, are not on that video,” the attorney said.
Zimmerman said Graves has a prior domestic violence conviction from 2016. In setting bail, she asked, “How do we keep people who ride the bus safe from a jerk like him?”