The Schuylkill County courthouse resembled an armed camp Wednesday as a large number of state police and sheriff's deputies stood guard while a preliminary hearing was held before a district judge in a courtroom.
District Judge Anthony J. Kilker, Shenandoah, found the commonwealth produced sufficient evidence to bind Julius C. Enoe, 30, of Reading, for trial for the alleged murder of Bruce L. Forker, 24, of Shenandoah, in the home of his fianceé.
Kilker chose to hold the preliminary hearing at the courthouse instead of his office for security reasons, because the defendant had received death threats. Police stood on guard at all entrances to the courthouse and also ringed the walls in the courtroom.
There were a number of family members of the victim and his fianceé present. After a two-hour hearing, when Kilker announced his ruling, the courtroom burst into applause.
Enoe faces charges of criminal homicide, robbery, burglary, theft, aggravated and simple assault plus four counts of recklessly endangering another person and six counts of criminal conspiracy.
The key witness against Enoe was a co-defendant, Damon Ennett, 29, of Freeland, who faces similar charges. He waived his right to a hearing and became a commonwealth witness. A third defendant, Jahmal Ollivirre, 19, of Brooklyn, N.Y., is being held in prison in New York on other charges and will have to be extradited to appear in the county court.
Ennett testified Enoe and Ollivirre went to Forker's house while he remained in the car and claimed they were only inside five minutes.
At the preliminary hearing Ennett fingered Enoe as the man who did the shooting. He said he didn't think there would be a killing only a robbery. Ennett testified he came along because Forker owed him $4,500 from the sale of a car. He admitted he and Forker had been involved in drug trafficking.
Another key witness was Kara Brennan, the fiancee, who testified she heard a gunshot. Forker was shot in the head and died almost immediately. She claimed she was grabbed and pushed upstairs by the two men before she heard the shots.
Several police officers testified on the results of their investigations and arrests.