NATIONAL NEWS

5th arrest made in mass shooting at Georgia teen house party

Apr 4, 2023, 3:54 PM

DOUGLASVILLE, Ga. (AP) — A fifth suspect has been arrested in a March 4 mass shooting at a 16th birthday party in suburban Atlanta that killed two teens and wounded seven other people, authorities said Tuesday.

Tahkel Marquise Beverly-Smart, a 21-year-old resident of Dallas, Georgia, was arrested Saturday in connection with the shooting at a house in Douglasville, Douglas County Sheriff Tim Pounds announced.

In addition to two counts of murder, Beverly-Smart is facing 40 counts of participating in gang activity, nine counts each of aggravated assault and aggravated battery, and 20 counts of being a party to a crime, jail records show.

Beverly-Smart, like the four other suspects arrested so far, was denied bail. It was not clear whether any had lawyers who could speak on their behalf.

Arrested earlier were Kingston Cottman, 17, Timothy Coleman, 18, and twin brothers Chance and Chase McDowell, 17. They all face murder and gang charges, while Cottman and Coleman also face aggravated assault, aggravated battery and gun charges.

The sheriff’s office didn’t detail Beverly-Smart’s alleged role in the killings or say who is believed to have fired guns.

The two dead have been identified as 15-year-old Samuel Moon and 14-year-old Aj’anaye Hill.

Pounds has said the shooting was meant to be “a gang hit” but those who were shot were not the intended targets. Others have said the shooting started after homeowners discovered some of the 100 or more teenagers attending the party were smoking marijuana and kicked them out.

Pounds said Tuesday that he expects additional arrests.

Douglasville is just over 20 miles (32 kilometers) west of Atlanta.

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5th arrest made in mass shooting at Georgia teen house party