A Dinwiddie County man charged with first-degree murder in the death of 25-year-old Deavon L. Jacobs fought with the Richmond man before the fatal shooting, witnesses said.
James D. Henshaw, 39, of the 12000 block of Siding Road in Church Road, also faces a gun charge from the Jan. 8 incident at the Motel 6 off Midlothian Turnpike and Chippenham Parkway.
Police responding to the motel for a report of a shooting found Jacobs on a second floor balcony around 10:48 p.m. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Witnesses told police the two men had been fighting when two shots rang out, according to court records. A preliminary autopsy showed Jacobs was shot twice with a .40-caliber weapon; once in the leg and a second, fatal shot to the throat that struck the jugular vein.
The witnesses said Henshaw had allegedly rented a car for Jacobs, which Jacobs had never returned, and that’s what the two men were fighting about just before the shooting. Henshaw was beaten in the fight, and in court on Tuesday, defense attorney Cary Bowen agreed when Richmond Circuit Judge William R. Marchant said the defense intended to say the shooting was in self-defense.
Days before the fatal shooting, Henshaw visited Jacobs in Colonial Heights to look for the rental car, court records said. He left angry after Jacobs said he didn’t know where the car was, and as Henshaw pulled away, a shot was fired at the car Jacobs had most recently driven.
The shooting was never reported to Colonial Heights police, nor did neighbors report hearing a gunshot, records show. But Richmond detectives found the car, which Jacobs had driven to the Motel 6 the night he died. That car was rented for him by another man who told police it should have been returned to the rental company a month earlier. Police found a bullet hole in the windshield and dashboard.
In January, Henshaw was released on a $20,000 bond after Bowen told Marchant about Henshaw’s congenital heart disease that requires regular medication and trips to a specialist.
On Tuesday, Bowen asked Marchant to add counseling visits to the exceptions of his home arrest. Bowen said Henshaw has had mental issues related to the charges. Marchant took the request under advisement but asked for a referral or diagnosis from an existing doctor.
Henshaw, who has no prior criminal record, turned himself in to police the day after the shooting, and Bowen brought a .40-caliber gun to police, according to court records.
Another court date was set for April.