It was James Brewer‘s second court appearance in four days, but the first one in which he gave his real name.
Shackled and flanked by US Marshals, Brewer appeared in DC Superior Court Monday afternoon to be presented with the felony murder charge authorities had anticipated presenting him with on Friday.
That plan was foiled when Brewer exchanged identification bracelets with another defendant and called out that man’s name when asked to identify himself. Brewer, posing as the other defendant, was released from custody, walked out of the courthouse and away from the felony murder charge.
“It’s clear he was scared and frightened of being convicted of something he didn’t commit,” his defense attorney, Michael Satin, said Monday.
Brewer is suspected in the shooting death of Solomon Reese inside an apartment in Southeast DC on June 27.
According to charging documents in the case, Brewer is believed to be one of four men involved in a fatal robbery attempt on Solomon.
Court and jail records indicate that none of the three other suspects are currently in custody or have been charged in the case.
Charging documents allege that three of the suspects entered Reese’s apartment and began assaulting him. When someone returned to the apartment from taking out the trash, that person was assaulted, too. Reese was shot and a witness saw the men running from the apartment with a black bag. Investigators say that bag was Reese’s and that it contained his personal papers.
At Brewer’s court appearance Monday, Judge Howze ordered him held on the “substantial probability he is one of the persons that participated” in Reese’s murder.
A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Sept. 1 at 9 a.m. in front of Judge Thomas Motley.