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Teen accused in fatal hit-and-run pleads not guilty in separate case

A teenager accused of killing a former police chief in a hit-and-run last year has pleaded not guilty to attempted murder charges in a separate stabbing.

Jesus Ayala, 18, was indicted in October in the killing of 66-year-old Andreas Probst, who was struck and killed while riding his bicycle in the northwest valley. Prosecutors filed a new attempted murder charge against him earlier this month in a separate case, in which he was accused of stabbing a man in June.

A grand jury handed down a superseding indictment last week on charges of battery and two counts of attempted murder, essentially combining Ayala’s new case with the alleged hit-and-run case.

During a court hearing on Thursday, Ayala pleaded not guilty to the new charges. He has previously pleaded not guilty to charges of murder, attempted murder, failing to stop at the scene of a crash, battery, residential burglary, grand larceny of a vehicle, possession of a stolen vehicle and possession of burglary tools in connection with an alleged series of crimes leading up to Probst’s death.

Chief Deputy Public Defender David Westbrook said Thursday that he intends to file a motion objecting to the superseding indictment based on a law that requires separate charges in an indictment to either be based on the same act, or based on connected acts.

Ayala and his co-defendants, 16-year-old Jzamir Keys, have been in custody since they were arrested in August in connection with the fatal hit-and-run. Keys is accused of filming a disturbing video of Ayala laughing and intentionally ramming into the back of Probst’s bicycle.

The two are also accused of stealing multiple cars and filming themselves intentionally hitting another bicyclist and rear-ending a separate vehicle before striking Probst.

Keys has not been tied to the stabbing, and has not faced any additional charges.

Contact Katelyn Newberg at knewberg@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0240.

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