PORTLAND (AP) – A Portland man was ordered held without bail Tuesday after making his initial court appearance on a murder charge for allegedly killing a New York man who had attempted to rob him.

Drugs are suspected to be involved in a robbery gone bad that ended with Lashawn Covington, 25, fatally shot on the sidewalk outside the Cumberland Avenue apartment of 45-year-old Randel Phillips.

Covington and 21-year-old Klein Ferandes, also of New York, planned to rob Phillips when they forced their way into his apartment Sunday night, police said. But when they fled, Phillips followed them outside and fatally shot Covington, police said.

Cumberland County Superior Court Justice Roland Cole agreed to a prosecutor’s request to seal court documents detailing the events surrounding the shooting.

Assistant Attorney General Lisa Marchese said the state continues to investigate the case and that charges against Phillips could be changed or dropped.

Defense attorney Clifford Strike said his client was the victim of a home invasion, and that he didn’t start the sequence of events that led to Covington’s death.

Ferandes, who has been charged with robbery, also appeared in court Tuesday. His bail was set at $50,000.

AP-ES-04-22-08 1752EDT

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