SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- The suspect in Saturday's deadly shooting in a Springfield shopping plaza parking lot answers to charges for the first time.

Karl Exantus, 30, was arraigned in Hampden District Court on Tuesday afternoon.

It was a short, but emotional, arraignment.

Exantus faces several charges including murder, carrying a firearm without a license, and carrying a loaded firearm without a license.

The murder charge stems from the death of Alexis Martinez and watching today's proceedings were Martinez's family and friends.

Security in the courtroom was stepped up, more than usual as Exantus approached the judge.

Exantus is accused of shooting Martinez in the parking lot of Five Town Plaza in Springfield on Saturday.

Martinez was found unresponsive in his car and prounced dead at the scene.

Exantus was silent, mostly keeping his head down, as his attorney Donald Frank entered the plea

"We would ask that a not guilty plea be entered, and we waive formal reading of the remaining charges," Frank noted.

Before even stepping in the courtroom, Exantus's bail appeared to be decided.

"In regards to the bail, we have an agreement that Mr. Exantus be held without the right to bail without prejudice at this time," said assistant district attorney Max Bennett.

Exantus turned himself in late Monday evening, though a warrant for his arrest was issued Saturday.

The prosecution raised an issue with housing Exantus in court and it was determined that he will be held in the Hampshire County House of Correction in Northampton.

A not guilty plea was entered at his arraignment Tuesday afternoon.  Exantus was ordered held without right to bail, without prejudice.  

The next court date is set for January 18 and it will be a clarification of council as Frank is not expected to represent Exantus for the remainder of his case

Western Mass News will continue to follow this story and will have more information as it becomes available.

Copyright 2018 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation).  All rights reserved.

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