A man accused of killing another man in the middle of a love triangle, will go to trial. Judge Edna Atkins found there is enough evidence against Antonio McNichols to have him bound over to district court.
McNichols' preliminary hearing was held Wednesday morning and dozens of family members from both the suspect and victim were on hand to hear the evidence.
The prosecution says McNichols gunned down 26-year-old Davarus Neelon on January 13th inside the home of their mutual love interest, Kennetta Gunn, near 42nd and Ohio.
According to a police detective, Neelon arrived at the home while McNichols was getting four children ready for school. The two had an understanding that they would not be around the home when the other was present. A fight ensued immediately after Neelon walked in.
When McNichols took the four children outside to be loaded into a vehicle for school, Neelon followed him outside and watched him with the children. Neelon then turned and went back inside the house.
Prosecutors say that's when McNichols got a gun out of the trunk of the car, fired three shots into Neelon's vehicle, "just to see if it was working," and went back to the house. Because the door was locked, McNichols broke in using the gun and allegedly fired one shot at Neelon, who was laying on the living room floor.
Neelon was shot once in the upper right hip. He was conscious when paramedics arrived, and according to the detective, told first responders, "Antonio shot me." He later died at the hospital.
The defense asked the judge to lower the charge to second degree murder or manslaughter, because they argued there was no premeditation. In fact, they say McNichols left the scene without even knowing if Neelon had been hit.
The prosecution argued the fact that he shot the gun into the car "to see if it was working" is proof enough he intended to shoot and kill Neelon. The judge agreed there is enough evidence to send McNichols to trial.
According to police, after McNichols left the house, he put the gun back in the trunk, and later placed it inside his eight-year-old step-son's backpack.
McNichols was arrested, with the four children still inside the car, near 30th and Taylor, just minutes after the shooting.