The man accused of shooting a vacuum cleaner salesman during an October robbery attempt pleaded not guilty Thursday in Columbus Recorder’s Court.
Eric Abdo, 19, of 926 Dozer Street, was arrested Wednesday and charged with aggravated assault, criminal attempt armed robbery and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime. The charges stem from an incident that occurred Oct. 21 at the intersection of 38th Street and Second Avenue.
According to court testimony, Casey Nowell, a Kirby vacuum cleaner salesman, was leaving a residence in the 4000 block of Third Avenue about 10 p.m. when he encountered Abdo and a teenage female.
During a brief conversation, Nowell, 31, revealed he had in his possession a vacuum cleaner for sale. Abdo said his parents might be interested in buying it and convinced Nowell to follow him to his parent’s house.
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Driving his vehicle, Nowell followed Abdo and his female friend to the intersection of 38th Street and Second Avenue at which point the teen stopped her car and Abdo got out, Columbus Police Detective Robert Jackson testified in court.
Jackson said Abdo approached Nowell and attempted to rob him at gunpoint of his vacuum cleaner, valued at about $1,500. When Nowell refused to give up the vacuum Abdo shot him in his left arm, Jackson said. The bullet traveled through Nowell’s arm and into his chest. He was in court Thursday to face his alleged shooter.
Once the testimony and questioning had concluded, Judge Mary C. Buckner assessed Abdo a bond totaling $25,000 and sent his case over to Superior Court.
After the hearing, Nowell told members of the media that the bullet is now lodged in his liver and has yet to be removed.
“I thank God that I’m alive and able to sit here and talk with you guys right now,” Nowell said. “It’s unfortunate that it happened, but we’ll let the stuff turn out in court.
Let the wheels of justice go and do as they must, I guess.”
Asked what it was like to face Abdo in court, Nowell said it was a scary experience.
Nowell also said he wants the bullet removed from his liver, but can’t afford the procedure.
“If there’s anyone that could maybe call, my number is 706-442-0400. A physician, a surgeon, someone of that stature would be greatly appreciated ... I’d like to get this thing taken out as soon as possible.”