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DA: Trial before end of year likely for murder suspect

by Stevon Gamble | September 21, 2022 at 10:00 p.m.
Charles Jerome Carter

TEXARKANA, Texas -- A local man accused of murder could go on trial before the end of the year, the Bowie County District Attorney's Office said Wednesday.

Charles Jerome Carter, 31, is charged with murder in the Jan. 12, 2021, shooting of Nichlos Muldrow, 29, of Hope in the Oaklawn Shopping Center parking lot in the 2700 block of New Boston Road.

On Monday, Carter and his attorney, Michael Bernoudy of Marshall, Texas, appeared for a third hearing in 5th District Court, where Judge Bill Miller set another hearing for Oct. 3. The trial is expected before the start of 2023, according to the DA's office.

Muldrow was shot in the chest and leg while seated behind the wheel of his 2004 Cadillac in the parking lot of Harbor Freight, according to probable-cause affidavits. A man wearing a black jacket and jeans was seen exiting a black Nissan Rogue Sport and getting into the passenger seat of the Cadillac before the shooting and running from the Cadillac to the Nissan carrying a suitcase after the shooting.

The suitcase was found empty in the parking lot and recovered by police.

Muldrow attempted to drive away after being shot, but his car hit a tree in the parking lot of a nearby Whataburger, according to the affidavit. Muldrow died of his injuries at a hospital.

Through witness statements and video surveillance, investigators determined that Muldrow and the man who got in the passenger seat argued before two shots were fired.

An LG cellphone was found along with the empty suitcase in the parking lot and the suspected murder weapon, a Smith & Wesson pistol, was found in the Cadillac, the affidavit said. Shell casings that matched ammunition still loaded in the pistol were found in the Cadillac as well.

The gun's serial number led them to a residence in the 200 block of Citation, where Carter's girlfriend lived. In the driveway, investigators spotted a black 2017 Nissan Rogue Sport when they went there Jan. 14, two days after the shooting, according to the affidavit.

The girlfriend told investigators that she routinely let Carter use the SUV and the pistol, the affidavit said. Photos of Carter were observed during a search of the residence, and investigators noted that the background image on the cellphone found in the parking lot with the suitcase was of the same man.

Also found during a search of the Citation Street house was the box the firearm came in, according to the affidavit. The girlfriend admitted to attempting to report the firearm as stolen shortly after the shooting.

A photo posted on Carter's Facebook page and observed by investigators depicts him holding a gun that appears to be the same weapon recovered from Muldrow's Cadillac, the affidavit said.

Carter has remained in the Bowie County jail since his arrest in January 2021. Bail is set at $1 million.

Print Headline: DA: Trial before end of year likely for murder suspect

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