Augusta shootings kill 4 in 5 days – 2 in the same neighborhood
An apparent uptick in violent crime has left a string of deaths and injuries across the CSRA.
AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Richmond County deputies are now investigating three fatal shootings in the past two days.
The shootings happened on the heels of another fatal shooting late last week in Augusta and the discovery of a body in Sandersville on Saturday.
In January, we spoke with the sheriff’s office about the violent crimes, and Sheriff Richard Roundtree said it was time to make a change. But still, we’re seeing similar situations.
“These acts of violence are being perpetrated mostly in African American communities and mostly by African American individuals. Especially young, male African American individuals, and that’s extremely disheartening,” Roundtree said. “This is a cultural and generational problem that just law enforcement itself is not going to be able to tackle alone.”
The sheriff’s office has a prevention task force—however, they’re working to prevent actual crime from happening. At some point, Roundtree says there has to be a cultural shift that requires help from schools, commission, and families.
Augusta fatal shootings
The latest shooting happened Monday night at a Circle K gas station at 1739 Walton Way. Richmond County deputies responded to a shots fired came in at 10:33 p.m., and found a woman with at least one gunshot wound.
Coroner Mark Bowen says the victim was 52-year-old Jenefer Holt Herron of the 1800 block of Watkins Street. Herron was taken to AUMC and was pronounced dead at 11:45 p.m.
Dispatch says the suspect ran from the scene. We do not have a description of the suspect at this time.
Another shooting was reported earlier that morning at 7:23 a.m. when deputies were called to the 1900 block of Old Savannah Road to investigate a report of a death. At the scene, deputies found a male victim who’d been shot at least once time.
The victim had been found by a passing motorist and pronounced dead on the scene at 7:58 a.m., according to Coroner Mark Bowen.
Bowen identified the victim as Johnnie Coleman, 72, of the 200 block of Holloway Drive.
An autopsy is scheduled with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Bowen said.
The investigation is in its early stages, according to deputies.
Deputies are also investigating the shooting death of a 21-year-old man who was pronounced dead early Sunday in Augusta.
The shooting happened on the 3700 block of Oslo Road.
According to Coroner Mark Bowen, the victim was 21-year-old JaJuan Russell of the 700 block of East Chapman Street.
Russell was shot at least one time and was taken to Augusta University Medical Center. He was pronounced dead at 1:14 a.m. Sunday.
An autopsy is scheduled with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, and the investigation is ongoing.
A man died after being shot in the upper torso late Thursday in Augusta in the same neighborhood as Sunday’s shooting–, according to deputies.
Brandon Peebles, 24, of Girard, was shot around 10:45 p.m. Thursday in the 2300 block of Prague Court, according to the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.
He was found by deputies responding to a report of gunshots in the neighborhood south of Gordon Highway and about a mile east of Fort Gordon’s Gate 1.
The victim was taken to Augusta University Medical Center, but authorities said late Friday morning he had succumbed to his injuries. Bowen said he was pronounced dead at 11:23 p.m. Thursday.
Bowen said the victim’s body is being sent to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation lab for an autopsy.
Larger crime wave
The fatal shootings come as part of an apparent uptick in violent crime across the CSRA in the past few days:
- On Easter Sunday, two youths at Diamond Lakes Community Park were confronted, and gunshots were fired at them. The assailants fled, but authorities later arrested Xaviar Grinage, 25; Treyvion Grinage, 18; and Charles Grinage, 28.
- Sandersville police found the body of a man Saturday afternoon inside a home on Qwendolyn Street while responding to a report of a domestic dispute at the address. The GBI has been called in to assist in the investigation. Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call GBI at 478-374-6988 or Capt. Ken Parker of the Sandersville Police Department at 478-232-2628.
- On Friday, James Wesley Harn Jr., 67, shot his son, James Alexander Harn, 40, in the back with a crossbow in the 2300 block of Dorn Road in Augusta, according to deputies. The father then barricaded himself in the residence, deputies said. Deputies were able to take him into custody without further incident.
- A shooting injured one person on April 7 in the 500 block of Broad Street. The victim, a 27-year-old woman, was found lying on the sidewalk with a gunshot wound to her lower abdomen. Desmond Swearinger, 27, was identified by deputies as a suspect.
- And just before 3 a.m. on April 10, two people were shot at Broad and 10th streets. The victim suffered a gunshot wound to the neck and was taken to a hospital in critical condition. A second victim drove himself to the hospital and was stable.
- Also on April 10, vehicle-to-vehicle gunshots were fired on Washington Road near Alexander Drive. No one was reported injured.
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