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Detroit man charged with killing prominent hairdresser

Oralandar Brand-Williams
The Detroit News

Detroit — A 24-year-old Detroit man was formally charged Friday in the slaying of a popular local hairstylist.

Jimmy Jermaine Pickett, who was supposed to be getting married Friday, folded his arms and at times looked down as he was arraigned via video in front of Chief Magistrate Millicent Sherman in 36th District Court. 

Pickett is charged with first-degree felony murder, which carries a penalty of life in prison without parole, in the Tuesday death of Bashar Kallabat, 56, of Bloomfield Hills.

Jimmy Jermaine Pickett, 24.

Pickett's defense attorney, Philip Ragan, asked the magistrate to grant his client bond, saying he is a security guard with two young daughters and attended the Flip the Script job training and mentoring program.

Bashar Kallabat

Prosecutor Jaimie Powell Horowitz of Fair Michigan asked that Pickett not be given a bond, citing the suspect's previous criminal record, including a plea in 2017 for unarmed robbery for which he is on probation. Pickett also has a conviction for assaulting, and resisting and obstructing a police officer in connection with the 2017 incident.

The magistrate ordered Pickett back to the Wayne County Jail without bond.

A not-guilty plea was entered on Pickett's behalf. He was scheduled for a probable-cause conference at 8:30 a.m. Feb. 28 and a preliminary examination at 1:30 p.m. March 6, both before Judge Ronald Giles of 36th District Court.

The victim was found beaten in a room at the JZ Motel on Eight Mile near Gratiot on Tuesday evening. He died of blunt force trauma.

Police have said the suspect was seen in a surveillance video coming and going into the room occupied by Kallabat. Authorities allege Pickett went into the room, killed the hairstylist, took his personal property and left.

The suspect allegedly had used a ride share company, with Kallabat paying for the transportation. It is believed the victim met the suspect on a dating app.

Kallabat checked into the motel at 6 p.m. Tuesday. The suspect was seen leaving the room at 9 p.m. wearing a distinctive security guard jacket, according to authorities.

Police Chief James Craig said earlier this week that high-definition surveillance footage obtained through the city's Project Green Light program helped police catch the suspect.

bwilliams@detroitnews.com

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