RICHMOND -- A 27-year-old man who allegedly was on the run for four years after fatally shooting a neighbor in Richmond's Iron Triangle neighborhood was arraigned on murder charges Tuesday, the Contra Costa District Attorney's Office said.

Demaurier Bullard is charged with murder with use of a gun in connection with the March 17, 2009, slaying of 29-year-old Latoi Stevens in the 500 block of Sixth Street in Richmond. Bullard returns to court April 30 to enter a plea with a public defender, according to court records.

Bullard killed Stevens over loud music that would frequently come out of Stevens' house, a prosecutor said. Bullard moved from Oakland a short time before he started arguing with Stevens' household about the noise.

On the day of the shooting, Stevens' girlfriend was hanging outside the house when Bullard, wearing a bulletproof vest, approached with a gun in hand, a prosecutor said. Bullard allegedly followed the frightened woman into the house and forced his way in.

Without comment, he shot Stevens once in the neck, police said in 2009. Stevens, a culinary student and father of three, died in the residence.

Bullard quickly emerged as investigators' only suspect, but he left town just as fast, authorities said.

He was captured by the Sacramento County Sheriff's Office in an unincorporated area on April 17 and arrested on a $1 million warrant, said Richmond police Capt. Mark Gagan, who noted that witness cooperation was instrumental in the four-year quest to apprehend the suspect.

"There is no other dynamic that is more pivotal than witness cooperation when it comes to solving homicides," Gagan said. "The fact that he was able to elude authorities for so many years was frustrating, but there's no statute of limitations on homicides."

The Richmond Police Department offers a $10,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction in unsolved homicide cases, regardless of how long ago they occurred. Anyone with information surrounding an unsolved homicide can contact Detective Lt. Tirona at 510-620-6613.

Contact Malaika Fraley at 925-234-1684. Follow her at Twitter.com/malaikafraley.