One of the gunmen who police believe assaulted, carjacked and robbed a man near the intersection of Rigdon Road and Colorado Street made his first court appearance.
Jamal Keldelte Body, 19, of Columbus pleaded not guilty to one count of armed robbery and one count of hijacking a motor vehicle in Recorder’s Court Tuesday morning. He was represented by Columbus public defender Charles Lykins.
Body was placed in the Muscogee County Jail without bond and the case was bound over to Superior Court.
Columbus Police Sgt. Kenneth Hudson said three to five men physically assaulted a man near the intersection of Rigdon Road and Colorado Street before taking his cash, wallet, vehicle and more.
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When Lykins questioned Hudson during the hearing, the detective declined to answer a number of questions in a way that would publicly identify the victim or witness. Therefore, he did not reveal the day, time or type of vehicle in the incident that happened earlier this month.
Hudson said the vehicle is valued at $12,000. The other items taken in the armed robbery are worth more than $1,100, according to an arrest report.
Hudson said the defendant beat the victim along with the other men, brandished a firearm and then stole the vehicle.
“Because of the threat and fear of the victim and witness in this incident, I’ve been very vague in this testimony,” Hudson said. “However, the witness and the victim both identified the defendant in a photo lineup.”
He said the victim is currently in good condition.
Hudson said multiple people told police that they spotted Body in the stolen vehicle on a regular basis. The defendant didn’t testify.
Authorities have issued an arrest warrant for another individual who they believe was involved. Hudson said he declined to release the suspect’s name because the incident is still under investigation.
Hudson also told the court that one of the suspects in the carjacking is considered a person of interest in a recent murder that occurred near the scene of the incident.
The most recent murder to occur near Rigdon Road and Colorado Street was the shooting death of 29-year-old Jumunn Morgan of Columbus. On April 28, Morgan was found dead with multiple gunshot wounds in an apartment complex at 932 Rigdon Road, Columbus Police Lt. Consuelo Askew said.
Hudson did not clarify if Morgan’s death was the murder he was referring to during the 9 a.m. hearing.