Suspects plead not guilty in jewelry store owner murder - New York News

Suspects plead not guilty in jewelry store owner murder

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Raphael Rucker pleaded not guilty in the murder of a Villa Rica jewelry store owner on Oct. 18. Raphael Rucker pleaded not guilty in the murder of a Villa Rica jewelry store owner on Oct. 18.
VILLA RICA, Ga. -

Three of the five suspects accused in the fatal shooting of a popular jewelry store owner in Villa Rica pleaded not guilty on Friday.

Police say Mitch Mobley was shot and killed in June after confronting four men who burst into Mobley Jewelers and began breaking glass cases.

Authorities have arrested Eric Billings, Gregory Clifton, Bernard Hunt, Cranford Phelps and Raphael Rucker in the murder.

Clifton, Phelps and Rucker entered their pleas at the Carroll County Courthouse on Friday.

The alleged shooter, 16-year-old Eric Billings, who is being tried as an adult, is being held at a juvenile detention center, according to the assistant district attorney.

Hunt has returned to prison on a parole revocation.

Members of the Villa Rica community said they want justice in his death.

"There's a lot of anger. A lot of: ‘Why did it happen?' I just couldn't think of a man that deserved something like this less. He wouldn't have hurt a fly," said J.D. Walker, a friend and customer of Mobley's.

Mobley was married with two children.

The suspects will be back in court in January.

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