First student charged in SEMO beating case pleads not guilty, gets change of venue

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A Southeast Missouri State University student connected to the Dec. 13 beating of a fellow student pleaded not guilty to first-degree burglary and third-degree assault charges Monday and received a change of venue before Circuit Judge William Syler.

Brett Jones, 18, of St. Clair, Mo., was arrested Jan. 25 on suspicion that he, along with four others charged in the assault, entered a home at 1325 Dunklin St. and caused serious injury to Blake Carlton, a junior at Southeast.

Jones' case will now be heard in New Madrid County.

Brett Jones

"I have no idea when the next available court date is; you'll have to check with the clerk down there," Syler told Gordon Glaus, Jones' attorney.

When he was arrested Jan. 25, Jones admitted he had entered the house and punched Carlton one time with his fist, according to a probable-cause affidavit. While being interviewed by investigators again Feb. 5, Jones said he, Derek Gohn, Jared Goodson, Antonio Garritano and Pili Showers -- the other Southeast students charged -- all went to and entered the Dunklin Street residence together.

Jones, Garritano, Gohn and Goodson are players on the Southeast football team and are being withheld from any athletic activities, according to the school's sports information director, Jeff Honza.

Carlton, 21, said he was sleeping when the men entered the residence and threw him onto a coffee table. He blacked out and suffered serious head injuries, including a black eye.

Gohn, Showers, Goodson and Garritano were charged in connection to the crime Feb. 9.

Garritano, 19, of Jackson is charged with third-degree assault and first-degree burglary. He requested a change of judge at his court appearance Feb. 11.

Showers, 21, of Cape Girardeau has a preliminary hearing Monday, and Gohn, 19 of Bridgeton, Mo., has his preliminary hearing March 9. Both are charged with first-degree burglary.

Goodson, 22, of Cape Girardeau also received a change of judge at a Feb. 11 hearing before Associate Circuit Judge Gary A. Kamp. He is charged with first-degree burglary.

ehevern@semissourian.com

388-3635

Pertinent address:

1325 Dunklin St., Cape Girardeau, MO

Map of pertinent addresses

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