Likening it to the infamous feud between the Hatfields and the McCoys in West Virginia and Kentucky in the mid to late 1800's, Jackson Police Chief James Morgan said two of the three suspects in the shootout between two vehicles that took place on the Jackson square Wednesday afternoon are in custody, and a third suspect is being sought. The driver of the pickup involved was not involved in the fight and has not been charged.
Xavier Walker, 26, of Flovilla, was shot in the arm during the shooting and is being treated at a Macon hospital. He has been arrested and charged with two counts of aggravated assault, with more charges pending.
Deon Jermaine Smith, 29, of Jackson, turned himself in at the Jackson Police Department Wednesday night and has been charged with aggravated assault, reckless conduct, terroristic threats, and two counts of criminal damage to property.
Courtney Deon Marshall, 31, of Jackson, remains on the run and is being sought by the Jackson Police Department, Butts County Sheriff's Office, and the U.S. Marshals Service. He is facing the same charges as Smith.
Morgan said they are also looking for a "person of interest" who was not involved in the incident, but may be in possession of a key piece of evidence.
According to Morgan, there is no appearance of gang activity, but rather an ongoing feud between family and friends that happened to boil over around 3 p.m. Wednesday at the intersection of Oak Street and Third Street.
"This started in the county several days ago and eventually made its way to downtown Jackson," Morgan said. "It started out as a backyard fight and from that point they couldn't let it go. They've been looking for one another, but they just happened to run into each other downtown and that's when it took place."
Morgan said the driver of a black Dodge Dakota was getting ready to go to work when Scott and Marshal asked for a ride into town, and he let them ride in the bed of the pickup truck. When he stopped at the red light at the intersection of Oak and Third, Walker pulled up in a red Jeep Cherokee.
The trio saw each other and began arguing. The truck driver told police he was surprised when the shooting started and took off with Scott and Marshall hanging in the back.
Walker also left the scene, driving to his mother's apartment on Brownlee Road a short distance away. That is where police found and arrested him. He was transported by ambulance to Macon for treatment of the gunshot wound.
A short time later, the truck was spotted and stopped by Butts County deputies at the intersection of Mulberry Street and First Street. Scott and Marshall fled the scene on the foot. The driver was taken into custody and questioned, but eventually released.
Investigators were able to identify Scott and Marshall and made contact with Scott by phone. He eventually turned himself in at the Jackson Police Department.
Marshall is still being sought. Anyone with knowledge of his location is urged to contact Chief Morgan at 404-217-9242 immediately.
Jackson Mayor Kay Pippin said the shooting was unsettling, but praised the quick work by the police department and sheriff's office in apprehending the majority of the suspects.
"On behalf of the city council and the citizens of Jackson, I wish to thank Chief James Morgan and the Jackson Police Department, and Sheriff Gary Long and his deputies for their rapid response and skillful handling of this event," Pippin said.
"While this event is terribly unsettling, it should be no more, nor no less, unsettling than had it happened in any of our city’s neighborhoods. I wish to assure everyone that the city of Jackson will not tolerate crimes of any nature in any location in our city...
"By working together, our city police and county sheriff’s staff working in partnership with a strong, united community can and will remove all crime from our city," Pippin continued. "It’s your city. Help us preserve those things we all love about Jackson."