Taunton Fugitive Arraigned, Held Without Bail in Killing of Taunton Man
According to the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office, Jerome Fordham, 36, was arraigned Tuesday in Taunton District Court on charges of murder, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, carrying an illegal firearm, and assault and battery by means of a firearm.
Fordham pleaded not guilty and was ordered held without bail.
The arraignment came after Fordham had fled the state and was later arrested in Florida on July 19. He waived rendition the next day and was transported back to Massachusetts.
The charges relate to the November 6, 2022 homicide of Ross Copeland, 38.
On that date, at about 1:38 a.m. Taunton Police received a 911 call reporting a male was bleeding and needed an ambulance at the corner of Mason Street and Myrtle Street. First responders arrived to find Copeland suffering from an apparent gunshot wound. He was rushed to Morton Hospital, where he was later pronounced deceased.
The investigation led to an arrest warrant being issued for Fordham in January 2023.
“In mid-July of this year, a citizen in Tampa County, Florida saw a wanted poster for the defendant, which matched the identity of a man the citizen had seen living in a trailer park in that county,” the D.A.’s Office said.
The citizen contacted the local police in Florida, who then notified the U.S. Marshals, and Fordham was taken into custody without incident at the trailer park on July 19.
“I am very pleased the defendant was apprehended in Florida through the cooperative efforts of a civilian and law enforcement agencies, including our state police unit, Taunton Police, the Massachusetts State Police VFAS Section, the US Marshals and local police in Florida,” District Attorney Tom Quinn said. “I commend the civilian for being vigilant and promptly notifying the police.”