Bond was denied Tuesday for the Honduran immigrant accused of killing a greenhouse owner at his Lake Wylie home, and court documents released Tuesday claim the suspect confessed to involvement.
It also appears that Kevin Dejesus’ legal immigration status is in question after jail officials in York County placed a hold on him after a request from federal immigration and customs officials.
Dejesus, 22, of Charlotte, was charged Jan. 21 with murder in the Jan. 6 shooting death of Jesse Campbell, the 65-year-old owner of Campbell’s Greenhouse & Nursery in Charlotte’s Dilworth area. Police said several pieces of a broken taillight found at Campbell’s home matched the truck Dejesus was driving. In the arrest warrant served on Dejesus obtained by The Herald, York County deputies based probable cause for arrest that was agreed to by a judge on “evidence recovered” and “defendant admissions.”
Deputies declined to further discuss the case or specifics about Dejesus’ confession, and no other information was released in court Tuesday.
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Dejesus was in possession of a Honduran passport when arrested and jail officials said Tuesday that a hold on Dejesus has been placed by federal immigration officials. Little else is known about Dejesus, including how long he has been in the United States. He is single, has no children, and claimed in court that he has medical debts but provided no details.
The motive for the crime remains unclear, as is the relationship between Dejesus and Campbell. Campbell was shot to death and found by an employee after Campbell did not show up for work Jan. 6.
Dejesus had worked for Campbell doing yard work at Campbell’s home but was not a greenhouse employee, according Debbie Capps, another greenhouse worker.
Capps was thrilled that Dejesus was denied bond.
“Hallelujah! That is good news,” Capps said. “We don’t want him (Dejesus) out.”
The crime shocked Campbell’s loyal customers, as well as people who knew the Cleveland County, N.C., native from his years as a science teacher in Mecklenburg and Gaston counties.
Dejesus has been in custody for more than a month but was interviewed Monday in York County. Deputies retrieved him from Charlotte after governors from North and South Carolina signed warrants forcing extradition.
Dejesus said little in court Tuesday and required an interpreter. Bilingual Rock Hill defense lawyer Dave Cook, who is not connected with the case, agreed to serve as interpreter Tuesday after prosecutors opposed an employee of their office who is an interpreter handling Dejesus in court to avoid any conflict of interest.
Through Cook, Dejesus said he worked at a car wash before his arrest and had no money or assets, so he was assigned a public defender.
After court, 16th Circuit Deputy Public Defender B.J. Barrowclough said that although his office had not had a chance to interview Dejesus, the charges will be investigated thoroughly in a parallel probe to the police action.
“Our office will provide Mr. Dejesus with a vigorous defense,” Barrowclough said after court.
Andrew Dys: 803-329-4065
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