The man accused of firing a shot that ultimately killed Brandyn Preston has been ordered held on $1 million cash bond.
Derrick Jamaal McElroy, 26, of Fort Dodge, is charged with first-degree murder in Preston's death. Preston, of Fort Dodge, was 19 when he was shot and paralyzed at a party on Mother's Day in 2011. He died earlier this year.
McElroy appeared in Webster County Magistrate Court around 9:30 a.m. Friday via televised closed-circuit monitor.
Magistrate William Habhab told McElroy that the District Court had already set his bond at $1 million cash. He then scheduled McElroy's preliminary hearing for 4:30 p.m. Friday. However, the case is expected to be transferred to the District Court prior to the scheduled hearing.
Preston's father, Pat Preston; his stepmother, Valerie Newsome; his sister, Samantha Voigts; and his grandmother, Mattie Preston, sat in the front row of the courtroom during McElroy's initial appearance.
Newsome wore a shirt with "Team Brandyn" printed across the back and a large photo of Preston across the front.
Pat Preston said he's relieved charges have been filed in his son's case.
"I'm happy," he said. "Greatly happy. I'm just glad they took the time to make an arrest."
Brandyn Preston was shot in the neck while attending a party at 1101 10th Ave. S.W. on May 8, 2011.
He was admitted to Trinity Regional Medical Center around 4 a.m. that morning and later transferred to Iowa Methodist Medical Center in Des Moines before eventually being released in June 2011.
His injuries left him paralyzed from the shoulders down.
After he left the hospital, Preston lived with his mother, Kimberly Susan Wood, in Tampa, Fla., until his death on Jan. 22.
Police said his death was the result of the shooting.
In addition to McElroy's first-degree murder charge, he was also charged with probation violation. According to online court records, McElroy is accused of violating his probation on a child endangerment conviction. The conviction is from an incident in September 2011. McElroy was sentenced to two years of probation and served 15 days in jail, according to online records.
Paperwork for his probation violation charge was filed on May 11.
Habhab sent the case to District Court with bond set at $2,000.
McElroy is also facing drug charges in Polk County. In April, he was charged with possession with intent to deliver crack cocaine and possession of marijuana. His trial, according to online court records, is set for Wednesday.