At a video arraignment on Feb. 6, when both men were charged with aggravated murder, bond was set by a magistrate at $1 million each.
Howard continued the $1 million bond for Lay, but after noting the lesser charges against Mattox and the lack of significant past criminal record, the judge set his bond at $10,000, cash or surety.
If Mattox is released on bond, Howard ordered that he wear a GPS monitor and have no contact with Lay.
Vickie Risner, Amy’s aunt, attended the court hearings along with several other family members.
“She needs somebody here for her,” Risner said. “I will be.”
The men are scheduled to be back in court Feb. 26 for a pre-trial hearing.
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Court records filed in Butler County Area II court said Lay confessed to killing Risner, a mother of three sons.
Police were called shortly before 4 p.m. Feb. 4 on a report of an unresponsive person. Risner was pronounced dead at the scene, and her death was ruled a homicide by the Butler County Coroner’s Office. The cause of death is listed by the coroner’s office as “pending.”
In an application for a warrant to search the house, police said Risner suffered a gunshot wound to the head.
The house and Risner had been the subjects of a drug investigation by the Warren County Drug Task Force for months before the homicide, according to court documents.
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