A former employee of an East San Diego check cashing business pleaded innocent Thursday to the murder of his boss.
Municipal Judge Melinda J. Lasater set bail for John Edward Mullikin, 26, at $1 million as recommended by Deputy D.A. Robert Boles. Defense attorney Jack Campbell did not object to the high bail amount and didn't request a bail review hearing.
Mullikin, a transient, is accused of shooting Money Express owner Stephen E. Schaefer, 42, of La Mesa once in the head on Oct. 31 at his El Cajon Boulevard firm, which was closed pending its sale. Mullikin is also charged with single counts of robbery and auto theft.
Schaefer's badly beaten body was discovered Nov. 1 in the cashier's cage by his assistant manager, and his 20-month-old son was found sleeping nearby. Authorities said robbery appeared to be the motive, and believe the infant witnessed his father's death and fell asleep after being locked inside for several hours.
Mullikin was arrested Monday in Chula Vista a few blocks from where Schaefer's car was found several days after his killing. Lasater scheduled his preliminary hearing for Dec. 18.