One of the men accused of murder in a home invasion and fatal shooting of a Fort Lewis College student pleaded not guilty Friday.
Kodi “Maz” E. Kuauhtli’s defense attorney, David Greenberg, entered the plea for him. District Court Judge William Herringer then set Kuauhtli’s trial for two weeks starting May 8.
Kuauhtli of Phoenix and his three co-defendants face first-degree murder charges in connection with the May 24 shooting of FLC student Samuel Xarius Gordon, 20.
Herringer also set a hearing Jan. 6 to revisit Kuauhtli’s bond at Greenberg’s request.
The bond for each of the defendants was set at $500,000.
The other three suspects, Alvin Noel Flores of Phoenix; Kuauhtleko Garcia of Scottsdale, Arizona, and Daniel Nelson Wright of Phoenix have not entered pleas. In addition to first-degree murder charges, the men are charged with six counts of burglary, two counts of robbery, four counts of menacing and eight sentencing enhancers.
All four are suspected of orchestrating a home invasion to rob Gordon of marijuana.
In an interview with police, Kuauhtli, who was an FLC freshman in 2015 but did not attend the college at the time of the killing, said he knew Gordon had marijuana and devised a plan to have his three friends from the Phoenix area come to Durango to participate in the robbery.
Three men armed with handguns and with bandanas covering their faces entered the home at 253 Jenkins Ranch Road about 3:30 a.m.
The police have not said who they believe stayed outside.
Five people inside the house, including Gordon, were taken hostage. They were held at gunpoint, and some were bound with zip ties, according to police.
Gordon was shot in the abdomen, possibly while reaching for a flare gun, police have said.
Police officers said they found 9.1 pounds of illegally processed marijuana and more than $20,000 cash in Gordon’s room.