Valdosta police arrest Baytree Drive shooting suspects

| July 24, 2017

VALDOSTA – On 07-22-2017 at approximately 3:30 am, multiple emergency calls were made to Lowndes County E-911 regarding shots fired in an apartment complex in the 1400 block of Baytree Drive. Several uniformed patrol officers responded to the incident location.

Upon arrival, officers located multiple shell casings in the parking lot of the apartment complex. Contact with witnesses revealed that at least two subjects were shooting at each other in the parking lot. Multiple shell casings were found in the parking lot from more than one firearm as well.

All subjects fled the scene prior to law enforcement’s arrival. One subject that fled the scene was described as driving a dark in color BMW. A BOLO or “Be On the Look Out” was issued for the BMW as well as any other suspicious vehicles fleeing the area. Shortly after, two subjects called 911 from the 400 block of E Jane Street and reported that their vehicle had been shot at by an unknown person while in the apartment complex on Baytree Drive. Officers responded to the location and made contact with the two individuals, identified as Jabarri Brown and Travis Rutledge. Both had multiple inconsistencies in their stories, their vehicle had been shot several times, they were found to be in possession of a firearm, and the matching caliber spent shell casings were found at the scene. Both were detained for further investigation.

While speaking with the subjects on East Jane Street, a Lowndes County Sheriff’s Deputy reported a disabled vehicle near the intersection of Knights Academy Road and Bemiss Road. The deputy observed that the vehicle description was a dark colored BMW which appeared to have been shot multiple times. The investigating VPD officer travelled to the location and made contact with the driver, identified as Leon Gooden. The driver was in possession of a firearm; multiple spent shell casings were found in his vehicle along with several of the matching caliber at the scene. The officer was able to quickly determine that the driver also had multiple inconsistencies in his story and additionally attempted to dispose of evidence. He was also detained.

Based on witness testimony, evidence found at the scene, and the inconsistencies provided by all three subjects, all three were arrested and transported to the Lowndes County Jail. Warrant applications were presented to the Lowndes County Magistrate Court and were signed on each offender. They will now face charges of:

Jabarri Brown:

  • Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon-Party to a Crime (FELONY)
  • False Statements or Writings (FELONY)
  • Obstruction of a Law Enforcement Officer (Misdemeanor)

Travvon Rutledge:

  • Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon (FELONY)
  • Possession of Firearm or Knife During Commission of a Crime (FELONY)
  • False Statements or Writings (FELONY)
  • Obstruction of a Law Enforcement Officer (Misdemeanor)

Leon Gooden:

  • Tampering with Evidence (Misdemeanor)
  • Obstruction of a Law Enforcement Officer (Misdemeanor)

“The Valdosta Police Department’s uniformed officers and detectives have been working nonstop on investigating and arresting the offenders of the recent violent crime. VPD is grateful for the witnesses in this case who spoke with officers to report the incident,” said Lieutenant Adam Bembry.

“These incidents are senseless and will not be tolerated. We appreciate the assistance of Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office and the witnesses who helped us bring these offenders to justice,” said Chief Brian Childress.

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1 Comment on "Valdosta police arrest Baytree Drive shooting suspects"

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  1. Rex Reed says:

    Thank you to Lowndes County Sheriff, Valdosta Police Department, AND the witnesses for making our streets safer. Lock up these over-grown children that think being an adult is using a handgun to overcome conflict, then flee when the police are on the way. I hope the justice system keeps them off our streets for a very long time.