AU football shooting suspect appears in court, police find possible weapon

AU football shooting suspect appears in court, police find possible weapon

AUBURN, AL (WTVM) - News Leader 9 has learned Auburn police have recovered a gun that may have been used in the murder of an Auburn University football player over the weekend.

The suspect in this case, 22-year-old Markale Hart, went before a judge for his initial court appearance Monday afternoon.

Hart was read the charges against him, and learned if he could not afford an attorney one would be appointed to him.  He did not enter a plea.

Auburn police tell us Hart was identified by witnesses as the man who shot and killed 18-year old Auburn University football player Jakell Mitchell.

The shooting happened Sunday, Dec. 14 just after midnight at the Tiger Lodge apartment complex during a party that one of the residents was having at their apartment.

The warrant states Mitchell was in a fight with a friend of the suspect's, which is when witnesses say Hart pulled out a gun and fired.

"That particular stretch of roadway has come to my attention several times and I can tell you from my perspective I'm gonna take a very close look at everything that's been going on down there for the past decade," said District Attorney Robby Treese.

Police also say they have recovered a weapon. They will not say if the found it at the apartment complex or up in Tallapoosa County where the suspect was arrested at about 10:30 a.m. Sunday.

They say at this point they believe the gun may have been involved but are waiting to see if it matches several shell casings found at the scene.

Police say they still do not have a clear motive what the argument was about.

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