Man accused of killing 66-year-old man makes court appearance

Ronnie Berrian (WRDW-TV)
Ronnie Berrian (WRDW-TV)
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News 12 at 6 o'clock / Friday, Oct. 26, 2012

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- The Augusta man accused of shooting and killing an elderly man wants out of jail, but after a bond hearing Friday morning, he will be there a little longer.

The deadly shooting earlier this month left 66-year-old Russell Boyd dead, his family left wondering why and 28-year-old Ronnie Berrian charged with murder.

Little words can describe the feeling when Boyd's family saw the accused gunman for the very first time.

Johnny Harris, Boyd's cousin, said, "If he had to do something to my cousin, I'd rather him fight him and whoop him because it ain't hard for a 28-year-old man to beat a 66-year-old man."

But what investigators say Berrian did to Harris' cousin had irreversible consequences.

Carol Boyd, wife of the victim, said, "I had just saw my husband at 7:15 and to hear a call at 9 o'clock was just devastating."

Investigators say her husband and Berrian got into an argument at Berrian's Camille Street home. Deputies say Berrian pulled the trigger, but it didn't go off, so he went back in the home and returned, following Boyd half a block.

Larissa Tate, Berrian's fiancee, said, "How this situation has taken place about my husband being locked up is ridiculous -- and no bond? It's just totally ridiculous."

For a family grieving, it's exactly what justice looks like.

"I'm sorry for you all's lost, I can't take back what happened," Tate said.

The victim's wife described her husband, "He was a giving, loving, very kind man -- very kind. Always had a smile on his face."

They had been together for three years. The family wonders why someone would hurt an elderly man.

"The guys that's out here toting these guns, and shooting and aim later or shooting and think later, those are the ones that have seemingly lost total respect for elders," Harris said.

With no bond, Berrian may be doing just that -- thinking about that deadly decision, ultimately to be decided by a jury.

Boyd leaves behind his wife and a son. He owned a beauty shop in Wrens and cut grass on the side.

Meanwhile, the judge denied Berrian bond after hearing of his previous criminal history.

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