Preliminary hearing dates set in Boland case

Poster board Sen. Lindsey Graham used while discussing gun control and Boland.

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) Alice Boland's next court appearance is two weeks away, according to Charleston County magistrate court records.

Records indicate the 28-year-old woman charged with attempted murder will have a preliminary hearing Feb. 28 at 2 p.m. That will be followed by another court appearance in May and one more in July.

Boland has been assigned a public defender.

She is currently being held in the Al Cannon Detention Center on a $900,000 bond after police say she showed up at Ashley Hall School in downtown Charleston with a gun on Feb. 4 and pointed it at two school officials.

She pulled the trigger repeatedly, according to police, but the gun did not fire because there was not a round in the gun's chamber. Police said the only thing preventing the gun from firing was Boland's ignorance of handling firearms.

In Boland's bond hearing, she repeatedly said the gun was defective and would not fire.

Focus on Boland spiraled to the national level this week as Sen. Lindsey Graham used her as an example of the problems with existing gun laws in the U.S. He said Wednesday he was shocked that a woman who had pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity was later able to legally purchase a gun.

Boland pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity in 2009, following an incident several years earlier in a Montreal airport in which she threatened the lives of airport security, other travelers and then-President George W. Bush.

She repeated those threats to a Secret Service agent in her parents' Beaufort, S.C., home about a month after the incident in the airport. As a result, she was federally indicted.

Blame for Boland's condition has been cast on a number of individuals and institutions by her parents, Donald and Dellann, who filed two lawsuits naming the state of South Carolina, the state's departments of Mental Health and Social Services, a psychiatric facility in Columbia, a doctor at the facility and the College of Charleston.

Both suits made claims of abuse and harassment as well as a string of civil rights violations against their daughter. The suits sought to recover a total of $200 million from the institutions.

However, the defendants in the case were not properly served and the cases were dismissed.