MEMPHIS, Tenn. – An ex-convict accused of fatally shooting a police officer who interrupted a drug deal on a Memphis street appeared briefly in court via video link from jail on Wednesday, but he did not enter a plea on the charge of first-degree murder.
Tremaine Wilbourn, 29, answered two questions from L. Lambert Ryan, telling her that he did not have a lawyer and doesn't currently hold a weapons permit. Ryan scheduled his next hearing for Aug. 12.
She also noted that Wilbourn is being held on a $10 million bond, though court records initially listed the amount as $9 million.
Police say Wilbourn turned himself in to authorities Monday, ending a two-day manhunt after the death of Officer Sean Bolton, 33, on Saturday night. A memorial service was scheduled for Wednesday.
Bolton, who was white, was the third Memphis officer to be fatally shot in slightly more than four years. Wilbourn, who also goes by the name Tremaine Martin, is black.
Police say Wilbourn was a passenger in a 2002 Mercedes Benz that was parked illegally. Bolton shined his squad car's light on the Mercedes and approached the car on foot. Wilbourn got out, confronted Bolton, and they got into a physical struggle, according to police.
Wilbourn took out a gun and fired, striking Bolton multiple times, police said.
Wilbourn and the driver of the Mercedes ran away, and a neighbor used Bolton's radio to notify police about the shooting, police said.
The driver later turned himself in and was released without charges.
Memphis Police Director Toney Armstrong said Bolton had interrupted a drug deal, and officers found about 1.7 grams of marijuana in the car.
Wilbourn was on probation for an armed bank robbery. Wilbourn was sentenced to more than 10 years in federal prison and released on probation in July 2014. He was ordered to undergo mental health treatment July 7, according to federal court documents released Monday. It's not clear whether he was ever evaluated.