- Associated Press - Wednesday, November 25, 2020

MAGNOLIA, Ark. (AP) - An Arkansas college student who was fatally shot in August went to meet a man for a drug deal in a campus parking lot that turned into an ambush when a gunman shot at the student’s vehicle, according to an affidavit.

The probable cause affidavits were released to the public on Tuesday after a judge had initially sealed files in the case, the Arkansas Democrat Gazette reported.

Joshua Keshun Smith, 21, was a senior at Southern Arkansas University. He was killed on Aug. 11, which is the day fall classes were scheduled to start.

Sgt. Bret McMahen, a detective for the school’s police department, wrote in the affidavits that according to witness interviews, Smith had arranged a meeting to sell marijuana to a man. Smith asked Lucas Sharp and Alex Copeland to accompany him in his vehicle to meet the person because he did not know him well, police were told.

When the men went to meet the person, the man got into their vehicle. After examining the marijuana, the man told Smith he needed to get money and left, the affidavit said. It also states that when the man exited the vehicle, another person walked up and started shooting, hitting Smith and Sharp.

This week, authorities released capital-murder charging papers for the four men accused in connection to the shooting.

Odies Wilson, 21, Shaivonn Robinson, 20, and Le’Kamerin Tolbert, 21, and Quincy Lewis, 20, are being charged with first-degree battery and aggravated robbery. They were all arrested just days after the shooting and were denied bail. All of the men were students at the university except Lewis.

Prosecutors have said they are considering pursuing the death penalty.

Wilson, Robinson and Tolbert had been in Magnolia until about 10:30 p.m. the day before the shooting, when they left for Little Rock, Wilson told police. He also told police that they returned to Magnolia around 5 p.m. on Aug. 11. The shooting was earlier that day.

Wilson has petitioned the court to be released on bail. He is scheduled for a Dec. 3 bond hearing. His attorney, Ron Davis, has filed a motion to suppress statements his client made to police, claiming that investigators violated Wilson’s rights to question him.

Attorneys Robby Golden and Toney Brasuell are representing Tolbert. Lewis’ lawyer is Jeff Harrelson of and Katherine Streett is Robinson’s attorney.

Attorneys for the defendants did not respond to the newspaper’s request for comment.

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