Suspect in homicide that prompted no-knock search warrant arraigned

An arraignment was held Tuesday afternoon for the homicide suspect whom Minneapolis police sought when Amir Locke was killed.

Mekhi Speed, 17, appeared on a Zoom call in juvenile court at 3:30 p.m. He is charged with two counts of second-degree murder in connection with the shooting death of Otis Elder. 

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Speed’s mother, Cheryl Locke, was also present during the call. Amir Locke was Speed’s cousin. 

Police were serving a no-knock warrant on Feb. 2 at a downtown Minneapolis apartment when Amir Locke was killed. The unsealed warrants show that Amir Locke was not named in the search warrant.

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Ramsey County prosecutor Heidi Westby requested that Speed be held in detention ahead of the next court appearance, which was supported by juvenile probation officer Delores Grant. Speed is currently on juvenile probation. The judge agreed and ordered that Speed remain in detention due to the nature of the petition. 

During the hearing, defense attorney Paul Sellers raised issues with the language within the criminal complaint.

Sellers said that Speed received permission to travel to Winona from his probation officer and was not attempting to flee. The defense added Speed was unaware that police were searching for him and officers could have simply contacted his probation officer. 

The judge also ordered that a psychological evaluation be completed and a certification hearing be scheduled. That hearing was set for 8:30 a.m. on March 16 in person at Ramsey County juvenile court. The psych evaluation is expected to be complete within four weeks. 

The judge set the deadline for discovery for March 9.