The Bay City News reported on Friday that Michael Higginbotham, the 26-year-old man charged with shooting and killing an employee of the Department of Public Works earlier this week, has plead not guilty to the murder.

Higginbotham was arraigned in court in Friday and charged with murder, according to Bay City News. His publicly-appointed attorney said there were no witnesses to the shooting and that the Public Defender’s Office would be looking at video evidence, the wire service wrote.

He will have a continued arraignment hearing next week on December 9 and was being held in jail with bail at $5 million, Bay City News wrote.

Higginbotham was charged with the murder of Jermaine Jackson Jr., a 27-year-old man working on a graffiti crew for Public Works at the corner of 25th and Vermont streets.

Jackson had been involved in a city anti-violence program and got his GED before working as an apprentice for Public Works. Friends who arrived on the scene immediately following the shooting wept at the news and said Jackson was a committed father hoping to turn his life around.

Flowers, candles, hand written notes and parts of a Public Works uniform mark the spot where Jermaine Jackson Jr. was gunned down on November 30. Photo by Lola M. Chavez.

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