“There was bad blood,” Russell County murder trial begins in 2020

RUSSELL COUNTY, Ala. (WRBL)— The murder trial of a Columbus man accused of shooting dead a man at an unlicensed nightclub in Phoenix City began Monday morning.

Jaquandre Bowen was 24 when he was accused of fatally shooting 27-year-old Keon Simmons in March 2020.

During Monday morning’s opening arguments, former Russell County District Attorney Kenny Davis, who now works part-time in the district attorney’s office, told jurors that Simmons and Bowen knew each other. He claims the two had “bad blood” after Simmons pointed a gun at Bowen in January 2018. Simmons was arrested by Phoenix City Police Department and detained until the end of 2019.

Bowen was arrested in Columbus in April 2020; During that arrest, police recovered the weapon that police believe was used in the crime, Davis says.

Bowen is represented by Montgomery criminal defense attorney Jennifer Holton. She told jurors the evidence would point to another shooter, one of the 36 state witnesses, who was at the nightclub that night. This witness was the victim of another shooting that took place the same night that Simmons was murdered.

Opening speeches concluded Monday afternoon, with testimonies expected to begin Tuesday morning.

previous reports

April 6, 2020: Phenix City Police Arrest Murder Suspects Linked to March 14 Shooting | WRBL

March 14, 2020: A 27-year-old man is killed and another injured in two late-night shootings in Phenix City | WRBL

Laura Coffey

Laura Coffey is a Worldtimetodays U.S. News Reporter based in Canada. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Laura Coffey joined Worldtimetodays in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: LauraCoffey@worldtimetodays.com.

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