Four capital murder suspects in a Florida Avenue shooting will have a preliminary hearing on July 12 in a Houston County courtroom.
Willie Blackmon, 18, Kaleb Tubbs, 18, both of Dothan, Carlos Lindsey, 17, of Elba, and David Key, 21, of Abbeville, are charged with capital murder-robbery, capital murder-burglary, and attempted murder for the May 25 shooting death of Shawn Bernard Callins, 35, of Dothan, and causing critical injury to Kanesha Lee, 31, of Dothan. Lindsey was located in Enterprise last week and taken into custody.
A preliminary hearing is to determine whether the prosecutor has enough evidence to justify further criminal proceedings against the accused. If enough evidence is presented, District Judge Benjamin Lewis could bound all three cases over to a grand jury.
Lewis appointed attorneys Matt Lamere and Eric Davis to represent Tubbs, and Arthur Medley to represent Blackmon. Paul Arthur Young Jr. and Carmen Howell were appointed to represent Lindsey.
Dustin Fowler, who was appointed to represent Key, filed a motion for a gag order on May 30. Fowler’s motion asks to prohibit trial participants from commenting or releasing information to media and requests an immediate hearing.
Fowler argued that prejudicial pretrial publicity can jeopardize the defendant’s right to a fair trial by an impartial jury. Fowler also stated the court has an affirmative duty to minimize effects of prejudicial pretrial publicity according to the four, fifth, sixth, eighth and 14th amendments of the US Constitution, the Alabama Constitution, and Alabama law.
Fowler’s motion would not prohibit all speech and comments to the media, just comments and speech that would jeopardize the defendant’s ability to receive a fair trial and reliable sentencing.
Lewis has not ruled on the gag order motion.