CRIME

Gary Niles Montgomery arraigned, charged with murdering transgender woman, JaParker Jones

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Friends and family gathered today for the funeral of JaParker "Deoni" Jones, the transgender woman who was murdered at a Metro bus stop last week.

JaParker Jones, 23, was stabbed at a bus stop and died later at a hospital. (Photo courtesy of family)

And the murder suspect faced a judge for the first time this morning.

At his arraignment hearing today, Gary Niles Montgomery, 55, was ordered by a judge to be held without bail.

Wearing handcuffs and shackles in the court room, Montgomery appeared disoriented at times.

At one point, three U.S. Marshalls prevented him from collapsing and sat him in a chair when the court reporter read his charge—second-degree murder.

The arrest affidavit, released in court today, details witness accounts of what happened before and after Jones was murdered last Thursday at a bus stop on the 4900 block of East Capitol Street.

Police asked for the public's help identifying a "person of interest" seen on surveillance footage.

And according to the affidavit, witnesses have identified that man as Montgomery, now the suspect in the case.

One witness describes - before the attack - sitting at the same bus stop with a black man and a transgender woman and observing that man staring at the woman.

After the witness walks away, leaving the two alone, surveillance footage shows the suspect following Jones away from and back to the bus stop.

Then eight minutes later, Montgomery allegedly stands in front of her and strikes her in the head, causing her to collapse to the ground.

In the autopsy, a medical examiner determined Jones died from a fatal stab wound to the right side of her face.

Investigators say the motive is still unclear.

“We don't know what the relationship was at this time,” says Police Chief Cathy Lanier. “That's the best I can tell you.”

One witness told police the man at the bus stop had quote "big eyes" like he was under the influence.

Lanier credits the witnesses with stopping to rescue Deoni Jones after the attack and helping investigators make a quick arrest.

Gary Montgomery's preliminary hearing is set for February 24.

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