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Trial Set For Former Hancock College Athletes Charged With Murder

Lavell White and Ali Mohammed will face charges next July in shooting death of Terence Richardson

Ali Mohammed sits with his attorney, Lori Pedego, during a hearing Monday in Superior Court in Santa Maria. Mohammed is facing murder in burglary charges stemming from the death of Terence Richardson, 23, nearly a year ago.
Ali Mohammed sits with his attorney, Lori Pedego, during a hearing Monday in Superior Court in Santa Maria. Mohammed is facing murder in burglary charges stemming from the death of Terence Richardson, 23, nearly a year ago. (Janene Scully / Noozhawk photo)

The trial for two former community college basketball players accused of murder and burglary has been set for July in Santa Barbara County Superior Court.

Santa Maria Judge Rogelio Flores set a July 12 trial date for Lavell White and Ali Mohammed, former players on the Allan Hancock College basketball team.

White and Mohammed are accused of fatally shooting Terence Richardson, 23, in a parked vehicle near the interaction of Bradley Road and Jones Street late at night on Dec. 30, 2014. 

Both men also are alleged to have committed multiple burglaries. 

The men pleaded not guilty to the charges and denied the special allegations during an arraignment hearing Monday. 

Murder defendant Lavell White listens in court Monday in Santa Maria, accompanied by his attorney, Michael Scott. He and co-defendnat Ali Mohammed were ordered to trail next July 12. Click to view larger
Murder defendant Lavell White listens in court Monday in Santa Maria, accompanied by his attorney, Michael Scott. He and co-defendnat Ali Mohammed were ordered to trail next July 12. (Janene Scully / Noozhawk photo)

The trial is expected to last up to eight weeks, Deputy District Attorney Timothy Covello told the judge.

Mohammed is represented by Lori Pedego while White is represented by Michael Scott.

A trial confirmation hearing is planned for July 5.

Flores also scheduled a Jan. 11 hearing in case defense attorneys decide to file a motion to dismiss some the charges against the men.

Investigators say the fatal shooting occurred during a drug buy in which the defendants instead tried to rob the dealer, who was the vehicle’s driver, while Richardson sat in the passenger seat. 

The driver raced Richardson to Marian Regional Medical Center, where he died from the gunshot wounds.

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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