Kirkwood murder victim's family comes face-to-face with suspect

6:56 PM, Jan 2, 2014   |    comments
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Qutravius Palmer

DECATUR, Ga. -- Some emotional moments inside a DeKalb County courtroom on Thursday, as the family of a Kirkwood murder victim showed up in court to face one of the men accused of killing their son.

The family of 21-year-old Xavier Arnold sat right behind the accused, 22-year-old Qutravius Palmer

Just one week ago, Nichole Villafane's son Xavier Arnold, was gunned down on a Kirkwood bike trail during a botched robbery. Arnold was an Army Reservist who was pursuing an art degree at the Savannah College of Art and Design.

"You are attempting to rob the victim that your co-defendant shot Xavier Arnold one time in the head, causing his death," said the judge during the hearing.

The 14-year-old co-defendant, who was accused of pulling the trigger, was not in the courtroom. Palmer is being held without bond, and will appear in court on January 21, along with his juvenile co-defendant, for a preliminary hearing.

Villifane spoke with Palmer outside of court on Thursday.

"His mom, his family gets to see him today," Villifane said. "But I don't get to see my son, and I wanted him to see what he took from me -- to see the hurt."

Palmer told Villifane he was innocent, because he did not pull the trigger.

"Xavier will be vindicated," Villifane said. "I'm not worried about him saying he was innocent."

Palmer has been charged with felony robbery and armed robbery in the case.

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