Sheriff: Potential suspects identified in Highway 16 aggravated assault

SHEILA A. MATHEWS :::

Investigators of the Spalding County Sheriff’s Office are continuing to search for leads in Thursday’s aggravated assault that occurred on Highway 16, in the vicinity of Wani Road.
According to Sheriff Wendell Beam, potential suspects have been identified.
“I talked to the investigators a couple of hours ago,” Beam said at 4:30 p.m. Friday. “They were interviewing some people that have some information on the incident and we hope some arrests are coming soon. We’ve received the names of some possible suspects that we want to find and interview, and we’ll see where it goes from there.”
Beam has now confirmed that the victim did not sustain a gunshot wound to the head as initially thought.
“We received information late yesterday that the wound thought to be a gunshot wound was actually from where he (the victim) had been struck in the face with the gun,” Beam said. “After the initial attack, when he tried to escape, he was shot at, but he was not struck. There were a few shots fired at him as he ran from them.”
Beam said investigators now believe there were two vehicles and multiple suspects involved in the incident.
“Actually, what we have found out is that there was one other person in the vehicle he (the victim) was in, and he was involved. There was also a second vehicle at the scene and it contained at least two others that were also involved in the attack,” he said, adding that the motive now appears to be a robbery. “We don’t know yet if drugs were involved, but the follow up is that it was a robbery.”
Beam said he is not yet prepared to release the victim’s identity, but that information will possibly be forthcoming upon the suspects’ apprehension.
He said information obtained from physicians at Macon Medical Center, where the victim was flown for treatment, indicated he may be released as early as today.
“As far as any other danger (to the victim), we are not aware of any at this time,” Beam said.

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