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Man charged with murder got stopped with gun and drugs – but police didn’t arrest him


By Brendan Kirby

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    MOBILE, Alabama (WALA) — Police on May 17 pulled over a car that DeAngelo Demetrius Merrill was riding in and found cash, drugs and a loaded gun – yet did not arrest him.

Instead, Mobile police issued an arrest warrant days later, long after officers had apprehended him following a chase through a wooded area near Agate Street on the day of the stop. That warrant was still active when Merrill, according to law enforcement allegations, fatally shot 74-year-old James Jones on Tuesday night.

Investigators allege that Merrill, 28, of Prichard was seeking revenge for his girlfriend’s shooting less than an hour earlier but kicked in the door of the wrong apartment at Pathways Apartments on Florida Street.

Police would not say why officers did not immediately arrest Merrill after the traffic stop at the intersection of Gloria York Avenue and St. Stephens Road.

“Some of our narcotics investigative techniques result in not immediately arresting people, and issuing arrest warrants later,” Lt. Christopher Levy told FOX10 News.

Court records indicate that police found $4,367 and 18.9 grams of cocaine during the traffic stop. Officers found another 55.6 grams of cocaine next to Merrill’s dropped cell phone and a Glock pistol underneath his seat.

Just five days before the traffic stop, a Mobile County Circuit Court judge dismissed probation revocation proceedings against Merrill after prosecution witnessed failed to appear in court. It was the second time prosecutors were unable to get their witnesses to court.

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