JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) – A man accused of firing a weapon several times inside Monarch Apartments on New Year’s Day – when a 19-year-old from Kingsport was fatally shot – appeared in court Wednesday morning.

Dae’Vo Jennings-Worrell has been charged with 12 counts of reckless endangerment in connection to the shooting. Police previously told News Channel 11 that upgraded charges against Worrell are possible as the investigation remains ongoing.

Worrell appeared in court Wednesday for a criminal hearing. During the hearing, Worrell was assigned a private attorney due to what was described as a conflict of interest with the Public Defenders Office.

He is due in court for another hearing on Jan. 24.

Police responded to the apartment complex around 2:30 a.m. to find a chaotic scene. Reports from police state that several fights were going on at a party with more than 50 people present.

Witnesses told police that after gunshots were heard, people in the apartment complex began fleeing, some by way of the second-floor balcony and windows.

According to investigators with the Johnson City Police Department, Worrell admitted in a police interview to firing shots into an apartment door and wall from the hallway. He reportedly stated that while fights were going on inside the apartment, he fired gunshots into the door to keep his friend inside from being assaulted.

Ja’Shon Yates was shot three times in the chest and abdomen, an affidavit charging Worrell states. Yates was transported to the Johnson City Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

The JCPD previously told News Channel 11 that the department is looking into other persons of interest aside from Worrell.