William Edward Littleston

William Edward Littleton, 27, appeared in Marion County Court Wednesday for an arraignment.

FAIRMONT — The second man indicted for the Dec. 26, 2018 murder of 33-year-old Justin Michael Cassella pleaded not guilty at his arraignment Wednesday in Marion County Circuit Court.

During the arraignment before Marion County Judge David R. Janes, William Edward Littleton, 27, of Fairmont, entered the not guilty plea to first-degree murder and a separate charge of conspiracy to commit felony controlled substance violations.

Previously, on Tuesday, 35-year-old Richard Allen Moore II, of Fairmont, pleaded not guilty to the same charges during his arraignment.

A Marion County a grand jury indicted Moore and Littleton on Oct. 4 on one count each of first-degree murder for the shooting death of Cassella.

Janes said Wednesday that bond was denied for Littleton because of the first-degree murder charge being a capital offense.

Janes tentatively set both men’s trials for 9 a.m. Jan. 15.

Marion County Prosecutor Jeffrey Freeman said both the prosecution and the defense have requested discovery in each man’s case.

Police found Cassella dead with a gunshot wound at a home in the 2000 block of Dixie Avenue in December 2018.

Police said Cassella had a gunshot wound in the upper torso.

On Dec. 28, 2018, the Fairmont Police Department’s Detective Division arrested Moore.

Then, on Jan. 9, 2019, Fairmont Police Department officers received an anonymous tip of the whereabouts of Littleton, who had been a fugitive.

Police said multiple officers of the Fairmont Police Department, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office and the U.S. Marshal Service coordinated in entering an East Side residence off Route 310 to apprehend Littleton, who did not resist. The arrest was made without incident.

Both men remain held in the North Central Regional Jail.

Eric Hrin can be reached at 304-367-2549, or ehrin@timeswv.com.

Recommended for you