By Linda Cicoira

Bond was denied Thursday in Accomack Circuit Court for a local man accused of murdering his housemate last March.

Twenty-seven-year-old Rikece Labryan Campbell was indicted by a grand jury earlier this month on counts of second-degree murder and use of a firearm in the shooting death of 42-year-old Cervone Copes, of Atlantic.

Deputies found Copes’ body in his living room after arriving at the Tull Circle house on March 28. The officers were responding to a report of a shooting.

Campbell retained a lawyer and turned himself into authorities in early April. He has been in jail ever since.

Lawyer Lisa Broccoletti, stood in for her husband, defense lawyer James Broccoletti, during the proceeding. She contended the prosecution’s case was not strong as there was no eye witness and it is unknown if the shooting was “justifiable.”

Broccoletti said her client had requested a trial by judge, not by a jury. Despite the pandemic those trials thave been offered since July, she said. In January, the speedy trial time-limit would be expired.

She called Campbell’s cousin, Lassister Johnson, to the witness stand. Johnson said if bond was set, Campbell could live with him in Parksley. The poultry plant worker promised to call police if Campbell did anything to violate the bond conditions.

Commonwealth’s Attorney Spencer Morgan argued that having a place to live was not grounds for bond. He told Judge W. Revell Lewis III that probable cause was found in district court and that a family member had been present during the crime.

Lewis agreed and denied the request. The lawyers were discussing a December court date when they were called back to the judge’s chambers for a conference.

.