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Judge denies gang shooting suspect’s request for dismissal

A Spokane judge denied a suspected gang member's request to throw out the murder and assault charges against him following a deadly shooting at a Monroe Street music venue in September.

Carlos Fuentes, 25, asked the court to dismiss the first-degree murder and 12 drive-by shooting charges against him stemming from the shooting death of Julian Morrison, 26, at The Hop! late on the evening of Sept. 8. Investigators say the shooting, which took place in the parking lot behind the club, was likely the result of an ongoing gang feud exacerbated by the no-show of a popular rap artist club-goers thought was scheduled to appear.

Judge Ellen Clark ruled Thursday morning police had provided enough evidence to show Fuentes “was involved in some kind of incident or confrontation with the deceased,” despite witness statements indicating Kalen Bedford, 23, also arrested in connection with the homicide, was the only one who fired on Morrison. Fuentes' attorney, Robert Cossey, argued in a filing last month the only evidence against his client was hearsay and investigators could not prove he fired at people milling in the parking lot as he was driven from the scene.

As a result of Clark's ruling, Fuentes remains in custody in lieu of $1 million bond. A trial in the case is tentatively scheduled to begin next month.