Sunday, Aug 19, 2018
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Teen facing murder complicity charge in November robbery, killing

Waite High school basketball standout Carl Banks was arrested at school Thursday morning on a charge of complicity to murder.

Mr. Banks, 18, previously was charged only with aggravated robbery in Lucas County Juvenile Court for his alleged role in the Nov. 18 shooting death of Jerry McNeal, 31.

Lori Olender, chief of the juvenile division of the Lucas County Prosecutor's Office, said the ongoing investigation into the homicide and robbery turned up new evidence that warranted the additional charge against Mr. Banks, who was 17 at the time.

Also Thursday, two co-defendants in the case made their first appearance in Lucas County Common Pleas Court.

James Moore, 19, of the 900 block of Berry Street, and Eric Jones, Jr., 25, of the 2300 block of Warren Street each are charged with aggravated murder, murder, and aggravated robbery for the incident.

Judge Dean Mandros set bond for each of them at $1.5 million and ordered that they have no contact with each other or with Mr. Banks.

Michael Bahner, an assistant county prosecutor, told the court that Mr. Banks had been arrested at school Thursday morning and was to be arraigned Friday in Juvenile Court. He is being held in the Juvenile Detention Center.

Jeff Lingo, chief of the criminal division of the prosecutor's office, said prosecutors intend to have Mr. Banks certified to stand trial as an adult in the case.

Investigators say the three men planned to rob Mr. McNeal of cash when he emerged from a house at 1817 Bigelow St., which was known to be a gambling establishment. When Mr. McNeal came out of the house, he was shot to death.

A pretrial hearing for Mr. Moore was set for Feb. 6, while Judge Mandros continued Mr. Jones' arraignment until Feb. 2 so that his attorney can be present.

Mr. Moore is facing an additional charge of aggravated robbery in Toledo Municipal Court. On Tuesday, police filed the charge for an unrelated incident on Dec. 14.

According to court records, Bernice Wright said she was robbed of $300 at gunpoint by three individuals in the 1500 block of Fernwood Avenue. She told police Mr. Moore grabbed her purse and removed the contents while another person held her at gunpoint.

Mr. Lingo said the offense was unrelated to the robbery and shooting of Mr. McNeal a month before. He declined to comment further.

Jim Gant, Toledo Public Schools’ chief of staff, said Mr. Banks had been suspended from the basketball team Jan. 18.

“Toledo Public Schools placed Mr. Banks on athletic suspension after recent court actions filed against him and based the decision on the Ohio High School Athletic Association’s code of student conduct. The suspension remains in effect at this time,” Mr. Gant said.

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