Man accused of Carbondale murder pleads not guilty - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Man accused of Carbondale murder pleads not guilty

Matthew Jones (Source: Carbondale Police Dept.) Matthew Jones (Source: Carbondale Police Dept.)
Deaunta R. Spencer was shot just before 2 a.m. September 14 in the 400 block of North Brush Street. Deaunta R. Spencer was shot just before 2 a.m. September 14 in the 400 block of North Brush Street.
MURPHYSBORO, IL (KFVS) -

The man accused of a Carbondale murder pleaded not guilty Thursday.

Matthew J. Jones, 19, of Carbondale is charged with three counts of murder.

Family members of Deaunta R. Spencer filled the courtroom Friday morning, which brought many emotions.

Typically preliminary hearings are held in the Jackson County Courthouse.

But, State's Attorney Mike Weispiec says due to security reasons they chose to have Jones' hearing in a small courtroom at the jail.

Jones is accused of killing Spencer on North Brush Street in Carbondale on September 14.

Police say Jones shot Spencer just before 2 a.m. over a personal dispute.

Spencer died a short time later. 

In court, the judge ruled there was enough justification to continue with a trial.

A trial date was set for January 3.

Jones remained in the Jackson County Jail Thursday on a $1 million bond.

He's sitting in there in court smiling about my nephew that never had any problem with you at all, never," said Carolyn Oats. "Then on top of it he used the police chief's gun."

On September 16, Carbondale Police Chief Jody O'Guinn announced his personal handgun may have been used in a deadly shooting.  Police reports show O'Guinn reported his personal handgun stolen June 20.

Since then, the cries have grown louder that leaders in Carbondale need to come clean about when the chief's personal weapon was stolen and why it wasn't reported sooner.

The Jackson County Sheriff's Department is investigating issues surrounding the gun.

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