CROWN POINT — A criminal court judge denied bond Thursday for a 47-year-old man accused of ordering the murder more than six years ago of a state witness.

Ronnie E. Major will remain jailed until a Jan. 29 trial, according to court records.

Major was charged in December 2016 in Lake Criminal Court with murder and conspiracy to commit murder on allegations he arranged the killing of Jocelyn Blair, a 31-year-old woman shot to death Dec. 9, 2010, at the Coney Island Restaurant in Gary, according to a probable cause affidavit.

A witness allegedly told police Antoine J. Gates was paid $10,000 to kill the woman so she could not testify against Major at trial in an attempted murder case, the affidavit states.

Gates, 39, is alleged to have shot a second man at the restaurant, 60-year-old Michael C. Rivera, who police allege was also a co-conspirator in the killing.

Major's attorney, Scott King, filed a petition to allow bail in January. Several hearings on the issue were held this summer before Judge Samuel L. Cappas' ruling Thursday.

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Courts and social justice reporter

Steve covers Lake County courts and social justice issues for The Times. The UW-Milwaukee graduate joined The Times in 2016 after reporting on criminal justice in New Mexico and Wisconsin.