Court: Sands Apt. murder suspect Edward Love accused of driving shooter

tstevens@ledger-enquirer.comDecember 18, 2013 

Edward Love

More than a year after the fatal shooting of Jeffrey Morgan, the third suspect in the 2012 Sands Apartments homicide finally received his preliminary hearing.

Edward Love, 21, faced a murder charge during the 9 a.m. Recorder's Court hearing.

His two suspected cohorts, Dana Michael Kessler and Timothy Leshan Robinson, each face potential life sentences after they were convicted by a Superior Court jury during a Nov. 6 trial.

According to testimony from that trial, 25-year-old Morgan was found dead on April 6, 2012 after an alleged drug deal involving then 20-year-old Robinson and then 25-year-old Kessler.

During Friday's hearing, a detective told the court that Love allegedly drove Kessler and Robinson to the 1213 Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard apartment parking lot. The four men gathered in the back of Morgan's Mazda so Kessler could buy the marijuana.

But when Morgan handed Robinson the marijuana, Kessler allegedly pulled out a .45 caliber handgun and pointed it at Morgan, who begged him not to shoot.

Kessler claims the gun accidentally discharged, tearing through Morgan's right arm and his chest before severing an aorta. He bled to death internally.

A witness told Superior Court during the November trial that Robinson fled in Kessler's car. The detective in Wednesday's hearing said Love allegedly also fled with Robinson.

Kessler allegedly dragged Morgan out of his Mazda and drove away in the victim's car. Love then allegedly met the two near Talley Avenue, where they got the marijuana out of Morgan's car and left the Mazda running, escaping in Kessler's Mitsubishi.

Kessler and Robinson were arrested April 8, 2012, an Easter Sunday. After he was questioned by detectives throughout the night, Kessler confessed in a sworn statement the following morning.

Love was not arrested until June 12 in Phenix City, where he faced Russell County charges. He was transferred to the Muscogee County Jail Tuesday night.

The detective told the court that Love claims he knows nothing of Morgan's death, having only heard about it. He pleaded not guilty during Wednesday's hearing.

Judge Michael Cielinski set no bond for Love's charge. His case will be forward to Muscogee County Superior Court.

During the November trial, Assistant District Attorney Sadhana Dailey said Robinson faces a life sentence with the possibility of parole. Kessler faces life without parole because of a previous felony. He was convicted in 2007 of cocaine possession in New York.

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