Man arraigned in Monday morning shooting death

NILES — Niles Municipal Court Judge Christopher J. Shaker set bond at $2 million for Robin L. Caviness Jr., 39, this morning during his arraignment on a murder charge in the early Monday shooting death of Clayton Bender of Warren.

Caviness, of Howland, was video arraigned from the Trumbull County jail. No plea was entered, and a preliminary hearing is set for 9:15 a.m. June 20 unless Caviness is indicted by then.

Caviness is accused of shooting Bender as he sat in the back seat of a Cadillac parked behind Madden's Bar and Grill on Youngstown Road.

Police believe Bender and two other people had recently left a private gathering in the bar that was held to memorialize a man who was murdered several months ago in Warren.

They also believe Caviness and others with him may have also just come from the bar. Capt. John Marshall of the Niles Police Department said there was a physical altercation between the two groups before gunfire erupted, but Marshall said he doesn't know why they were arguing.

Police recovered the murder weapon, but they did not recover other weapons, Marshall said. The two people with Bender fled on foot when the shooting started, but they returned to speak with police after the suspects left the area, Marshall said.

The question of whether any additional charges will be filed in the case is in the hands of the Trumbull County Prosecutor's Office, Marshall said.

When Caviness was asked whether he qualified for a public defender, he replied that he has a job and six children. A public defender was assigned, but Caviness was advised he could hire his own attorney if he wished.

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