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Teen charged in officer’s slaying makes court appearance

This photo provided by the Dallas County, Ala., District Attorney’s office shows Police Officer Marquis Moorer, who authorities said was shot to death in Selma, Ala., on Tuesday, July 27, 2021. (AP Photo/Dallas County District Attorney’s Office)

SELMA, Ala. (AP) — A teenager accused of using a rifle to kill a police officer who was taking a lunch break at home made his initial court appearance Friday wearing a bulletproof vest.

Javonte Stubbs, 18, was under heavy police guard during a hearing in Dallas County, where a judge scheduled a preliminary hearing for Sept. 17. Asked by a reporter whether he killed Selma Police Officer Marquis Moorer, Stubbs responded by shaking his head “no,” WSFA-TV reported.

An attorney appointed to represent Stubbs did not immediately return an email seeking comment.

Stubbs, who was a star football player at Selma High School, was charged with capital murder in the killing of Moorer, 25, and attempted murder in the wounding of Shakiaria Barley, a woman described by police as being in a relationship with Moorer.

Moorer was on duty and went home for lunch early Tuesday at an apartment complex where he lived when he was shot, authorities said. The shots were fired from outside, killing the officer and wounding the other person in what a prosecutor described as an ambush.

Authorities have not released a possible motive in the shooting.

Around town, some homes and businesses are displaying blue and black ribbons in honor of Moorer.

“It’s being done to provide support to his family and his extended law enforcement family,” Susan Youngblood, a former City Council member, told The Selma Times-Journal. “When there’s a situation like this when an officer is killed on duty it sends a wave of shock through the whole law enforcement community, and they need the visual to know the community is behind them and supports them.”

Graveside services are scheduled for Moorer for Thursday, according to an obituary.

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