A hearing to move the case of a Columbia 16-year-old, accused of fatally shooting another teen during a fight last summer, to juvenile court has been postponed.
The Howard County Circuit Court hearing, scheduled Monday, was postponed to April 27 because of a potential conflict of interest involving an investigator from the state's Department of Juvenile Services who was assigned to write a report, according to the postponement request filed by Joseph Murtha, defense attorney for Monti Mantrice Fleming.
The document said the author of the report was the probation agent for Fleming and the victim.
Murtha was not available for comment.
Fleming is accused of shooting Shawn Edward Powell, 18, of Columbia in an apartment complex in the 11200 block of Powder Run in Hickory Ridge village Aug. 27. Fleming is charged as an adult with first- and second-degree murder, first- and second- degree assault, reckless endangerment and handgun violations. Fleming also faces adult charges of attempted murder stemming from an incident Aug. 22 in which a man was shot in the leg during a confrontation.
A judge had denied Fleming's request for a transfer from Howard County Detention Center, where he has been held without bond since his arrest, to a juvenile facility. Murtha argued that his client was not receiving the proper education while in solitary confinement at the detention center. Before his arrest, Fleming had been enrolled at Homewood Center, a county school for troubled youths.
Powell's was one of the four homicides in Howard County last year.