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An ex-convict who was working as a watchman pleaded not guilty today to a charge that he murdered a man he thought had broken into a duplex he was guarding. Debonaire Dobbz, 37, is accused of fatally shooting 35-year-old Lonnie Turbin of Oakland in the 1300 block of 83rd Avenue at 2:15 a.m. on Feb. 6. He’s also charged with being an ex-felon in possession of a firearm arm as authorities say he served two terms in state prison in 2006 and 2007 on narcotics convictions.
Oakland police said a duplex under renovation that Dobbz was guarding was burglarized early the morning of Feb. 6 and he confronted and shot Turbin, who he suspected of committing the break-in. Police said Turbin was unarmed and they cannot confirm if he was the person who burglarized the property. Dobbz entered his not guilty plea today only after Alameda County Superior Court Judge Carrie Panetta ordered him to do so.
Dobbz’s attorney, Alameda County Deputy Public Defender Timothy Murphy, asked to delay Dobbz’s plea because he hasn’t yet received all of the police reports in the case.Panetta asked Murphy, “Does that mean that after you get all the reports you will then come back here and have Mr. Dobbz plead guilty to murder?” Murphy then backed down and said, “My client doesn’t want to accept your offer” and had Dobbz enter his not guilty plea.
Panetta said defendants are entitled to receive evidence from police and prosecutors but they don’t need to get all the evidence before they enter their pleas.The judge oversees a busy calendar of criminal cases and tries to keep cases moving along and avoid delays.Dobbz, who is being held without bail, is scheduled to return to court on April 16 for a pretrial hearing.
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