Alabaster gas station murder suspect set to appear in court
By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor
COLUMBIANA – A 45-year-old Alabaster man who has been charged with shooting and killing a clerk at a local Chevron gas station in 2016 is set to appear in court in early August, according to Shelby County Circuit Court scheduling documents.
Michael Anthony Powell, who lists an address on Simmsville Road, is set to appear in court for a status hearing in front of Judge William Bostick at 1:30 p.m. on Aug. 6.
Powell was indicted by a Shelby County grand jury in November 2016 on a capital murder charge originally brought against him by the Alabaster Police Department on Oct. 30, 2016.
Powell is facing allegations he shot and killed 54-year-old Pelham resident Tracy Latty Algar while Algar was working a Sunday morning shift at Alabaster’s Kirkland Chevron off U.S. 31.
In the Chevron shooting, Alabaster Police Chief Curtis Rigney said the suspect allegedly entered the gas station, took Algar into the bathroom and shot her in the top of the head, killing her. The suspect allegedly stole a “couple hundred dollars” in the robbery before fleeing the scene on foot, Rigney said.
He has been held in the Shelby County Jail without bond since his Nov. 4, 2016 arrest, and allegedly attempted to identify himself as another inmate in the jail in early December 2016, according to his arrest warrants.
In a previous request to bar the death penalty in Powell’s case, Powell’s attorney claimed Powell’s “indictment fails to allege the existence of any aggravating circumstances which would authorize a sentence of death.”
“The failure of the indictment to allege one or more aggravating circumstances precludes the state from requesting the death penalty, and bars this court from sentencing the defendant to death in the event that he is convicted of capital murder for the reasons stated in this motion,” read the request.
Bostick denied the request to bar the death penalty in December 2017.
Powell’s upcoming hearing date was set a little more than a month after Powell filed a handwritten motion in Circuit Court requesting a court appearance, claiming he was having issues with his court-appointed attorney.