A handcuffed Floyd Palmer appeared nervous as he shifted his head from side to side at the back of a small hearing room in the Fulton County Jail. But he was never brought before the magistrate judge. A jailer led him away and a representative of the public defender's office said he was waiving the hearing.
It was the second time that relatives of 39-year-old Greg McDowell showed up for Palmer's first court appearance only to find out it wouldn't happen.
Police say Palmer calmly walked into a chapel Wednesday, approached McDowell and shot him to death at World Changers Church International south of Atlanta. McDowell, 39, was killed as he led a prayer group of about 25 people, police said. No one else was hurt.
Police arrested Palmer several hours later, when they spotted his Subaru station wagon at an Atlanta shopping mall.
Palmer's attorney, Elizabeth Markowitz of the Fulton County Public Defender's Office, didn't immediately return calls Friday from The Associated Press.
On Friday, Palmer spoke quietly with a jailer next to him during the brief time he stood in the hearing room. He was just outside the view of a group of McDowell's relatives seated in a gallery nearby. After a few moments, he was led away by the jailer, and a representative of the public defender's office later told the judge he had waived the hearing.
Fulton County Magistrate Judge Maureen Malone set Palmer's next court appearance for Nov. 9.
McDowell's relatives declined to comment as they left the jail and walked into a van operated by the District Attorney's victim services unit.
Palmer was charged more than a decade ago with a shooting outside a Maryland mosque, according to police records. Police say he shot Reuben Muhammad, who told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that he was stunned to learn about the Georgia shooting.
Muhammad told the newspaper that he heard gunshots and felt his legs "melt into the ground" outside the Baltimore mosque in June 2001.
Palmer was committed to a psychiatric hospital in 2004 after pleading not criminally responsible to the mosque shooting. Despite objections from prosecutors, a judge released him in 2006 on the condition that he abide by a number of restrictions for five years.