Huggins bound over to face murder trial in home shootout
Three men wearing tightly-tied hoodies to obscure their faces and armed with pistols were committing a robbery in a southeast Topeka home but then gunfire exploded, and two men were fatally wounded, and a third man was wounded, witnesses testified Wednesday.
On Wednesday, the wounded man, Larry D. Huggins III, 19, faced a preliminary hearing tied to the holdup and one fatal shooting.
Huggins was bound over to be tried for felony first-degree murder in the shooting death of 15-year-old Owen Hughes, attempted aggravated robbery of three juveniles, conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery, and aggravated burglary.
Huggins hasn't been charged in connection with the fatal shooting of one of the three gunmen, Reginald McKinney, 21.
The one-week jury trial of Huggins is scheduled to start in Shawnee County District Court on May 11. District Court Judge Cheryl Rios is hearing the case.
The shootout occurred when three men attempted to rob three youths of marijuana, cash and two firearms, including an AK-47 assault rifle, according to evidence from Topeka police witnesses.
A juvenile witness testified he was at the home of Owen Hughes at 2415 S.E. Maryland on November 12 when they looked outside and saw three men dressed in black hoodies. The hoods were tied tightly to obscure their identities, and the three men were standing in the front yard.
The three knocked on the front door, asking to use the phone, then forced their way inside when one of the occupants cracked the door to talk to them.
The three intruders asked where the "big gun" was, the juvenile said.
Hughes was backing up, saying, "Don't shoot," the juvenile said.
Gunfire erupted inside in the Maryland house. More than 15 shots were fired, the juvenile said.
"It was a lot," the juvenile said.
"I'm shot! I'm shot!" the juvenile quoted Hughes as saying. Hughes collapsed outside a bathroom door and was unresponsive. At least one pistol was found near Hughes, according to testimony.
One of the men dressed in black stumbled out the front door, then collapsed in the front yard of the house next door at 2405 S.E. Maryland. Another man in black who had been in a closet ran out, and third robber disappeared, the juvenile witness said.
The shootings were reported to 911 just after 3 p.m. on November 12.
When Topeka Police Officer Aaron Bulmer arrived with another officer, two men called to police to direct them to a man lying in the grass next door at 2405 S.E. Maryland. One of the men wearing a black hoodie was still breathing, but there was a large pool of blood coming from his left side, Bulmer said.
The man, identified as Reginald McKinney, was pronounced dead at the scene at 3:14 p.m.
Topeka Police Officer William Davenport said he found a wounded man, Hughes, lying near the front door.
Mariah McKnight, Huggins' girlfriend, testified she was at work that day when Huggins texted her to tell her he was "hit."
After she got off work, she picked him up and drove him to a hospital to get treatment for a leg wound. which had been bandaged.
Topeka Police Detective Lance Green said footage from a surveillance camera in the 2400 block of S.E. Maryland neighborhood showed two men fleeing from a house. Clouds of dust indicated shots were being fired, Green said.