COURT: 16 pounds of marijuana stolen in deadly pizza restaurant shooting

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - A man arrested and charged with the murder of a local rapper outside a pizza shop in Columbus answered to several charges in Recorder's Court.

Eric Spencer, 28, pleaded not guilty to the murder of 32-year-old Brandon Denson.

A detective with the Columbus Police Department testified Monday morning that investigators were able to place Spencer at the crime scene after they recovered his fingerprints from the victim's car in the aftermath of the April 6 shooting.

Specifically, the detective told Judge Julius Hunter that police found Spencer's prints on the driver's side back door of the car.

CPD testified that Denson was shot from behind several times, recovering shell casings from a 40 caliber pistol in the parking lot a Pizza Hut.

Detectives also testified that Spencer and the two other suspects stole a large bag from Denson's vehicle, and inside the bag police say there were 16 pounds of marijuana.

Spencer's attorney, Mark Shelnutt, spoke to News Leader 9 after the hearing, referring to the evidence brought by police and prosecutors as circumstantial since they have not retrieved the alleged weapon used to kill Denson.

"They haven't recovered any property that was supposedly taken, no other weapons recovered, no other witnesses to this," Shelnutt said. "It seems like they just wanted to make an arrest. Based on what I just heard, in there, it doesn't look like there's a case."

Columbus police said they interviewed Spencer Thursday afternoon to find out where he was the night of the shooting.  Shortly after, they issued warrants out for his arrest, not only on the murder charge but also charges of armed robbery and possession of a firearm during a crime.

At this time, Columbus police are still actively searching for two other suspects they believe were with Spencer the night Denson was shot and killed.

As for Spencer, his case has been bound over to Superior Court, where a judge there will determine his bond.

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