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Darius Armadore, charged with the fatal shooting of Todd Thomas in New London in 2006, waived his right to a probable cause hearing and pleaded not guilty when he appeared Thursday morning in New London Superior Court.
Armadore, 32, also known as “P-Nut,” and Gerjuan R. “Cali” Tyus, 32, were charged in November 2012 with Thomas’ murder following a renewed investigation of the case by New London police and the Southeastern Connecticut Cold Case Unit.
Defendants in murder cases are entitled to a probable cause hearing at which the state presents evidence to convince a judge there is enough proof to continue the prosecution. Defense attorney John E. Franckling told Judge Susan B. Handy Thursday that Armadore was waiving his right to the hearing.
Tyus, represented by attorney Christopher Duby, had previously waived his right to a probable cause hearing in the case and pleaded not guilty.
The attorneys will now begin discussing the case with prosecutor Paul J. Narducci to determine whether it can be resolved with a plea agreement short of trial. Both defendants are being held in prison in lieu of $1 million bonds.
Thomas was shot in the head as he stood in front of Ernie’s Café smoking a cigarette on Dec. 23, 2006. According to police, Thomas and Tyus had been feuding over gold necklaces that Tyus had taken from Thomas’ brother, John “John-John” Thomas, who claimed they were worth $10,000 each.
— Karen Florin