Irving Fenner Jr. makes first appearance in Cleveland County cou - | WBTV Charlotte

Irving Fenner Jr. makes first appearance in Cleveland County court

(Christian Flores | WBTV) (Christian Flores | WBTV)
CLEVELAND COUNTY, NC (WBTV) -

After being arrested and indicted for murder in Rhode Island, Irving Fenner Jr. - the man accused of shooting and killing a Shelby Police Officer Tim Brackeen - made his first appearance in Cleveland County court Monday morning.

Fenner was extradited back to North Carolina last week. He faces a first degree murder charge.

In court, the judge read him his charges, which also include first degree burglary, second degree kidnapping, and two counts of robbery with a dangerous weapon. Those charges are what Fenner was wanted for when Officer Tim Brackeen tried serving him an arrest warrant the night of the shooting.

Cleveland County District Attorney Mike Miller has already filed the paperwork seeking the death penalty.

Miller said Monday's court appearance is just the beginning of a long process, and that this case will likely take more time to get to trial than most murder cases.

"On a capital case, I'm sure it'll be an excess of a year, probably more than that," Miller said.

Between now and the beginning of the trial, Miller, Fenner's lawyer, and the judge will go over several motions, starting either at the end of this week or the beginning of next week.

Fenner's lawyer has already mailed Miller the first motions he wants to file.

"I'm sure there will be many more motions to follow that over the next year or so, and we'll address each of those as they come forward," Miller said.

Since Fenner was already indicted in Rhode Island, his case will not be presented to a grand jury in Cleveland County.

Right now, one of Miller's top priorities is keeping the trial in Cleveland County, since that's where the crime happened, and the victim of the crime is a Shelby Police Officer.

"Ultimately, that'll be a decision made by the court, but I have complete confidence we can find a fair and impartial jury here in Cleveland County," Miller said.

Fenner is being held without bond in the Gaston County Jail.

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