GBI: Suspect pointed gun at law enforcement before he was shot

| January 20, 2016
Adam Floyd |

Adam Floyd |

VALDOSTA – The Georgia Bureau of Investigation released information Wednesday stating an armed robbery suspect pointed his gun at law enforcment officers before he was was shot and killed by a Lowndes County deputy Tuesday afternoon.

The armed robbery suspect was shot by a deputy with the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office at the Pilot Travel Center off Interstate 75 Exit 11.

At around noon, the Hahira Police Department received a report of an armed robbery at the Harvey’s Supermarket at 775 Highway 122 West. A Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office deputy spotted a vehicle matching the description of the one used in the robbery, said Jamy Steinberg, GBI Special Agent-in-Charge.

An LCSO deputy caught up with the suspect at the Pilot Travel Center and approached a vehicle matching the description, which was parked next to a gas pump across near the store’s main entrance.

“The initial deputy that located the vehicle interviewed a female travelling with the male and learned the male suspect was hiding in the back seat of the vehicle and was armed with a pistol,” Steinberg said. “Additional backup was requested by the deputy to this location. Lowndes County Deputies and Georgia State Troopers responded to the Deputy’s request.”

Officers reportedly made several attempts to have the man surrender.

“The male did not comply with the repeated requests and exited the vehicle with a pistol,” Steinberg said. “According to preliminary witness reports, the male failed to drop the weapon or surrender before pointing the gun at law enforcement who then fired upon him. The male was transported to South Georgia Medical Center where he later died from his injuries.”

Deputies established a perimeter around the Pilot Travel Center during the brief standoff and evacuated the store and an adjacent business.

After the shooting, GBI Agents responded to the scene to begin a crime scene examination, identify witnesses and collect evidence.

“The Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office contacted the GBI office in Thomasville and requested an independent investigation into the shooting. Upon completion, the GBI case will be turned over to the Southern Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s Office for any action the District Attorney deems appropriate,” Steinberg said.

An autopsy of the victim’s body was scheduled for Wednesday, Steinberg said.

The male and female were both from out of state and not local residents, reports stated.

“The case is active and additional witnesses are being identified and interviewed,” Steinberg said. “Evidence collected will be examined and analyzed by the GBI Crime lab to assist in the investigation.”

The names of the suspect and the woman he was travelling with have not been released.

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