New details emerge in Jackson murder as case moves toward trial

JACKSON, Mich. (WLNS) — A Jackson couple accused of murder were back in court Tuesday for a preliminary examination hearing.

Raheim Armstrong and Prettyattie Cooper, who were in a relationship at the time they allegedly committed the crime, are charged with open murder in the shooting death of Ronald Demetrius Owens.

At the hearing Tuesday morning, the judge ruled there enough evidence to move this case toward a trial.

And we also learned more about what these suspects could have been doing the day of the murder.

Orlando Cunningham says in October, he got in a car with Raheim Armstrong and Prettyattie Cooper, and headed out to buy cocaine from Ronald Demetrius Owens.

“Said he might have it at the time,” Cunningham said giving testimony.

They met Owens in Jackson, but the drug deal didn’t go as expected.

“He handed him some cocaine,” Cunningham said. “Heard a gunshot, and then I seen Demetrius hit the ground.”

Cunningham says he saw Armstrong shoot Owens, then drive away with Cooper behind the wheel.

Owens later died from a single gunshot wound to the head.

After running from the scene, Cunningham told police what he saw.

Both suspects were arrested two days later.

It was revealed in court that Cooper and Armstrong were in a dating relationship at the time of the murder, and had been together for three weeks.

Cooper told police that before picking up Cunningham, and meeting Owens, they went to a prior drug deal.

“She also said she observed Mr. Armstrong produce a handgun, and point it at the individual,” said Detective David Stamler of Michigan State Police.

After getting cocaine from that robbery, she drove off and Armstrong said he needed to make another stop.

“She said that Armstrong mentioned that he wanted his dope, and it was time to get some money in his pocket,” Stamler said.

Cooper also told police she saw her boyfriend, Armstrong, shoot Owens.

“She was troubled and scared by what she had just seen,” Stamler said.

By driving Armstrong around as he committed crimes, prosecutors say she’s an accomplice.

Plus, authorities claim she didn’t do anything to stop the crimes.

After several hours of testimony, the judge decided there was enough evidence to proceed and sent the case to circuit court.

Both suspects will be back in court next month for another hearing, but so far no trial date has been set.

 

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