PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — A man arrested in connection with a recent homicide in Providence will remain behind bars for now.
A bail hearing was held Tuesday for 36-year-old Rufus Watson, who faces several firearms charges in the death of 35-year-old Jennie Jensen last week.
Jensen was found shot to death inside a Prudence Avenue home on the afternoon of Monday, Jan. 30. Police said she owned the property and was attempting to evict Watson. She had been renting the apartment to Watson’s cousin, who no longer lived there, police added.
According to police, Jensen and two others kicked down the door and Watson was allegedly waiting inside with an AR-15-style rifle. In court Tuesday, prosecutors said it was an illegal ghost gun with a shortened barrel.
Watson claims he fired in self defense. Police believe Jensen and her two companions were also armed, but the only firearm found at the scene was the rifle. Police said no one else was wounded in the shooting.
Watch: Watson bail hearing (story continues below)
Murder charges have not been filed in the case. Watson is charged with possession of a firearm by a person convicted of a crime of violence, possession of a ghost gun, possession of a machine gun, and two counts of possession of a large-capacity magazine, all of which are felonies.
Watson was initially held on $100,000 surety bail. His attorney on Tuesday sought to have that lowered, arguing that it’s inappropriately high. The state maintained that it’s reasonable due to Watson’s out-of-state criminal record, his lack of contacts in Rhode Island, and the fact he’s accused of shooting and killing Jensen.
The judge reduced Watson’s bail to $75,000 with surety.
Watson is due back in court April 24.