DURHAM -- A $50,000 bond was set Wednesday for one of two teens accused in Durham's first homicide of 2006, the March fatal shooting of 24-year-old Alvin Lee Jones.
Nicholas Alexander Mack, 17, previously had been held without bond in the case.
He and Dontae Daevon Jones, 18, are charged with shooting Alvin Jones in the back at the Bentwood Park apartment complex on Junction Road in eastern Durham. Authorities have said the shooting apparently was gang-related.
Superior Court Judge Ron Stephens rejected a defense request that Mack's bond be set as low as $25,000.
"My focus is on community security," the judge said.
Prosecutors have said the Joneses and Mack were traveling together when they apparently opened fire on a group of other men. They said one of the bullets apparently struck Alvin Jones by mistake.
Official reports indicated that Dontae Jones had the initials "EDC" tattooed on his arm, standing for a gang known as the "East Durham Crips."
The fatal shooting occurred on territory claimed by a rival gang, Assistant District Attorney Jim Dornfried said in court Wednesday.
"A lot of people's lives were put in jeopardy," said Dornfried, noting that numerous people were in a parking lot where the shooting occurred.
Evidence indicated that Mack was firing from a car with a .38-caliber gun when Jones was killed, Dornfried added.
He also said that Mack had avoided prosecution in November for giving fictitious information to a police officer, and that he was bonded out of jail on a marijuana charge when the murder occurred last month.
But defense lawyer John Fitzpatrick argued that the shooting was an accident, and that Mack was not the gunman. He said another man in the car with Mack, identified only as Mike, was the probable killer.
"There's no one who can put a weapon in my client's possession at all," Fitzpatrick said. "Nobody puts a weapon in Mr. Mack's hand. Is there any independent witness who can say Mr. Mack had a weapon? The answer is clearly no."
Fitzpatrick said his client's family probably could afford the $50,000 bond.
If so, Judge Stephens ordered that Mack live with his mother, attend school daily, observe a 9 p.m. curfew and stay away from gang members
respect the hustle daygos young ballatician