A Portland teenager has pleaded not guilty to murder in a fatal shooting on a Bayside street corner early this summer.

Tyrese Collins, 19, appeared in the Cumberland County Courthouse for five minutes Tuesday afternoon, just long enough for him to enter his plea before Superior Court Justice Thomas Warren. Dressed in a black blazer, khaki pants and sneakers, he kept his face down and spoke little for most of the hearing.

The small crowd in the Portland courtroom was quieter even than Collins. A group of four people sat with a victim’s advocate. Five people sat in the back row, one of them holding a baby. All of them left quickly after the hearing, either departing the courthouse or disappearing into a conference room with the prosecutor and the victim’s advocate.

The shooting was one of several violent crimes in Bayside this summer that put residents on edge. Police have recently stepped up patrols in the area and cracked down on disorderly and nuisance conduct.

According to police, Collins shot 45-year-old Jack Wilson on June 26 during an argument on a street corner near the Oxford Street Shelter. Collins was charged with murder in July and has been held without bail at the Cumberland County Jail.

Police have released few other details about the shooting and haven’t said what they believe motivated the confrontation between the two men. The Maine Attorney General’s Office said an affidavit in the case has been impounded.

Wilson was living primarily at the shelter. People who knew him said he was hardworking and did not get into trouble. Initial police reports said a Portland officer was near the shelter at the time of the shooting and heard gunfire. The officer ran to the area and administered first aid to Wilson, who had one gunshot wound to the stomach, until he was taken to Maine Medical Center in critical condition. He died a week later.

Collins spent time at the Long Creek Youth Development Center in South Portland, but his juvenile record is not publicly available. Last year, he was a senior captain of the basketball team for A.R. Gould, the educational component within Long Creek, and was featured in a Portland Press Herald article about the team’s appearance in a regional championship game.

Collins was arrested in February in connection with a stabbing in Westbrook last November. He was released in March on $250 cash bail and then placed back in custody for three weeks in May. He pleaded guilty to violating conditions of release on May 16 and was sentenced to seven days in jail. He was out again on $500 bail when Wilson was shot, according to court records.

During Tuesday’s hearing, Warren said the aggravated assault case will be delayed until the murder case is completed. It is not clear when the next court date for Collins will be. One of the defense attorneys, Robert LeBrasseur, has withdrawn from the case because he has a conflict with potential witnesses, and a new attorney will need to be appointed.

Megan Doyle can be contacted at 791-6327 or at:

[email protected]

Twitter: megan_e_doyle

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