Trenton man surrenders to police for unrelated reason, gets charged with murder of Zaire Gibbs

Seth Z. Bowers

Seth Z. Bowers

A city man has been charged in connection with the murder of Zaire Gibbs, who was shot last week during an altercation in the East Ward.

Seth Z. Bowers, 21, is charged with murder and related weapons offenses for allegedly shooting Gibbs while in the first block of Washington Street around 3:50 p.m. on June 1. Gibbs died in the hospital as a result of his injuries the following day.

Prosecutors say Gibbs and Bowers were arguing minutes prior to the shooting, and detectives who spoke on condition of anonymity say the argument may have regarded drugs.

Bowers voluntarily visited Trenton Police headquarters on North Clinton Avenue the day following the shooting after learning detectives wanted to speak with him. During that visit, he was arrested in connection with unrelated warrants. Then, on Friday evening, while being held in the Mercer County Correction Center, Bowers was charged with Gibbs’ murder.

Bail for the murder charge was set at $1 million cash.

Bowers is no stranger to law enforcement. In December last year, he allegedly beat a man with an airsoft gun after claiming to be a cop and stealing the victim’s property.

Officials say detectives were working as part of a robbery suppression task force near the intersection of Division and Charles streets when they saw a man who appeared to be in distress frantically pointing in the direction of a suspect, later identified as Bowers. Police say Bowers was quickly walking down the street, so the detectives pulled up next to him to investigate the matter.

As one detective stepped out of the patrol car, police say, Bowers ran, which sparked a foot chase. During the pursuit, Bowers allegedly tossed a black gun under a pickup truck and was then arrested at gunpoint. When police recovered the weapon, they realized it was an airsoft BB gun.

Police then spoke with the distressed victim who said he was walking on Charles Street when he was approached by three people, one of whom was Bowers. The victim said Bowers pulled out a gun, claimed to be a police officer, and then stole his wallet, necklace, cash and a key. Bowers then hit the man in the face with the weapon before walking away, according to police. The victim suffered visible injuries to the right side of his face, and an injury to his left knee, but refused medical attention.

When police searched Bowers, they found him in possession of the victim’s property.

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