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Accused gunman: ‘Will you just tell his family I’m sorry’

SALISBURY — Speaking to the judge via a closed-circuit television Thursday, the accused gunman in the murder of Hecham Abualeinan apologized for the shooting.

“Will you just tell his family I’m sorry,” Christopher Lee Watson told District Court Judge Beth Dixon.

All three suspects in the shooting of Abualeinan, the owner of Z&H Mart on Mooresville Road, appeared consecutively on a television in a packed courtroom Thursday at noon.

All three suspects were given court-appointed attorneys. All are scheduled to be in court for a probable cause hearing on Jan. 9.

Of the three, Watson appeared the most emotionally distraught.

After apologizing to the court, he was led away by jail officers as he wiped tears away on his orange jumpsuit sleeves.

Maurice Alexander Robinson and Kevin Lamont Canzator, the two customers who made a purchase and left Z&H Mart shortly before the gunman entered, also told the judge they needed attorneys.

Because each suspect could face the death penalty in the case, the suspects were assigned provisional attorneys, but trial attorneys will be assigned at a later time.

Robinson told the court he was blind and couldn’t see Judge Dixon.

He leaned toward the microphone with his left ear, his arms folded, and seemed unfazed by the seriousness of the charges.

Canzator, on the other hand, seemed stunned and spoke quietly in short answers.

Check Friday’s Salisbury Post for more information.

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