A Hays man will face trial on seven charges against him and received a stern warning his release from jail was on condition of no contact with the victim.
Matthew Markley pleaded not guilty Monday in Ellis County District Court to felony charges of aggravated arson, criminal threat, possession of methamphetamine and marijuana, and two misdemeanor charges of violation of protective order.
District Judge Glenn Braun also ordered Markley released on an own recognizance bond with a strong warning any contact between him and the victim would result in Markley going back to jail.
“I couldn’t be any clearer,” Braun said in allowing the release, and outlined any contact between Markley and Nicola Pfeiffer, with whom he has had a relationship, Markley will go back to jail no matter who initiates the contact or if it’s through a third party.
Markley will be on supervision under Northwest Kansas Community Corrections with additional requirements including wearing a GPS device, curfew, no alcohol or drug use and frequent tests for substance use.
A three-day trial will be scheduled in the charges of aggravated arson, criminal threat and violation of a protective order. The charges allege Markley set off a large firecracker outside the door of Pfieffer’s apartment building. In executing a search warrant, police also found drugs and weapons at Markley’s residence. A two-day trial will be scheduled in the charges of possession of methamphetamine, possession of marijuana and criminal use of a weapon. The trials might be conducted consecutively if schedules allow.