Man accused of killing landlord given $5 million bond; father says he ‘snapped’

Co-defendant Pierre Williams had his arraignment continued to next week

Maurice Watkins, accused of murdering his landlord.
Courtesy: WCMH

COLUMBUS (WCMH) – Maurice Watkins stood in handcuffs before a Franklin County magistrate on Friday and entered a not guilty plea to a long list of felony charges, including murder, for allegedly killing his landlord.

Columbus Police investigators say Joe Remlinger had gone to Watkins’ Grasmere Avenue home on Thursday of last week to collect rent money. That’s when police say he shot Remlinger three times.

HOMICIDE SUSPECT'S FATHERHours later, police say Watkins set this abandoned garage on Lilley Avenue on fire. The landlord’s body was found in a burned-out car inside.

Watkins’ father Gary was in court today for his son.

“He snapped and he was going through a lot. I don’t know what was going on. But he’s not the person who’s all over the news,” he said.

Gary Watkins told NBC4 that his own daughter was murdered so he can empathize with the Remlinger family

“Sympathies go out for the family, his kids and his relatives too,” he said.

Police say Watkins didn’t act alone. Co-defendant Pierre Williams had his arraignment continued to next week.

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