Tevin Williams entered Courtroom 1150 not through a door but on a video monitor, then took a seat in a folding, metal chair.
“Are you, Mr. Williams?” District Judge Ron Chapman asked him from the bench.
On the video screen, Williams shook his head.
“You’re not Mr. Williams?” the judge asked.
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“Oh, no, yessir,” Williams said with some confusion.
By now, the 19-year-old is perhaps the best known inmate in Charlotte.
Williams is accused of lurking on the edge of the uptown entertainment district early Thursday with a stolen gun, then kidnapping, assaulting and robbing an out-of-town couple who were returning on foot to their hotel.
Police say the crimes occurred around 1:30 a.m. near the corner of College Street and Martin Luther King Boulevard.
“It’s a heinous crime,” a Charlotte-Mecklenburg police captain said at a press conference to discuss Williams’ arrest.
In all, Williams faces charges of rape, sexual assault, armed robbery, kidnapping, trespassing and firearm offenses. That brings his bond to almost $500,000.
Records indicate Williams has been arrested five times in Mecklenburg County since 2015. He served a year in prison for common law robbery before his release in August.
Williams’ first public appearance in court, via a camera in the Mecklenburg jail, lasted no more than 10 minutes. That was long enough for Williams to get an attorney and for the prosecutor to ask Chapman to raise the bonds to ensure Williams remains in jail, given the nature of the charges.
The judge was skeptical. On Thursday, a police official said Williams was “possibly homeless” since being released from prison 10 months ago.
“Do you have a realistic fear that he can make this bond?” Chapman asked the prosecutor. “I’m going to leave those bonds where they are.”
On the video screen, Williams stood up from the chair without a word and disappeared from view. Within a few seconds, another inmate had taken his place before the camera.
Williams will appear in the same courtroom in two weeks.