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DECATUR — Zachary Batson, the 19-year-old Decatur man charged with setting up and acting as the driver in a robbery that led to a woman being shot, pleaded not guilty to a charge of attempted murder in Macon County Circuit Court on Monday.

Batson also pleaded not guilty to charges of home invasion and residential burglary. The charges come in the wake of a home invasion and robbery Sept. 20 in Decatur’s Park City Mobile Home Community in which a 52-year-old woman was injured severely after being shot three times.

Damon L. Davis, 19, whom prosecutors are accusing of being the shooter, has pleaded not guilty to attempted murder, aggravated battery with a firearm, home invasion causing great bodily harm and home invasion with a firearm. His case is scheduled for a pretrial hearing Dec. 20.

Mikayla Melton, 18, whom prosecutors said was part of the robbery team, is charged with attempted murder, home invasion and aggravated battery with a firearm. Her case is due for a pretrial hearing Nov. 15, and court documents do not show she has entered a plea.

Davis and Melton are being held in custody while Batson is free, having posted  bond on Oct. 24.

Appearing before Associate Judge Phoebe S. Bowers with his attorney, Andrew Wessler, Batson waived his right to a preliminary hearing. Having noted his not guilty plea, Bowers assigned Batson’s case to the trial list of Judge Thomas E. Griffith and set a pretrial hearing for Dec. 18.

A police affidavit said Batson acted as the driver for Davis and Melton, picking them up after they had carried out an earlier home invasion in the 3400 block of Kent Avenue in the Park City mobile home park.

The affidavit said he drove them to the home of his former girlfriend on Delta Avenue in Park City, “informing them that cannabis was stored in the residence and that it could be stolen.”

Prosecutors said Davis and Melton then carried out the home invasion, with Davis shooting and wounding the woman homeowner as she tried to flee. Batson is also accused of being the getaway driver after the woman was shot.


Staff Writer

Courts and public safety reporter for the Herald & Review.