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Mena Arkansas News covering Polk County and the surrounding area

Teen Charged With Murder In Hot Springs

(HOT SPRINGS) A first-degree murder charge filed against a Hot Springs teen in the fatal shooting of a 21-year-old man Saturday was amended Monday to capital murder.

Laquan Vontae Paskel, 18, was taken into custody without incident about 3:45 p.m. Sunday at a residence in the 200 block of Oakcliff Street in the death of Keon Lashawn Jackson early Saturday, according to Hot Springs police.

Jackson, of Hot Springs, was found lying on the ground in front of Apartment No. 30 at 241 Autumn St. after officers responded to a possible shooting at that location at 2:20 a.m. Saturday, police said.

Paskel was initially charged with first-degree murder, punishable by up to life in prison, but Garland County Prosecuting Attorney Michelle Lawrence said the charge was amended Monday in Garland County District Court to capital murder, punishable by life in prison or the death penalty.

Paskel also is charged with aggravated robbery, punishable by up to life in prison, and felony theft of property over $1,000, punishable by up to six years.

The probable-cause affidavit in the case was sealed Monday by a court order so no other information was available, but police said in a news release Sunday that it is believed the incident was narcotics related.

Paskel was initially held without bail but appeared Monday via video conferencing before Garland County District Judge Ralph Ohm, who set bail at $750,000. Paskel pleaded innocent to all the charges, and a felony review hearing is set for May 13.

Ohm issued a court order barring Paskel from contact with any witnesses in the case and issued a gag order.

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