Two jailed in Cedar­town shoot­ing death

♦ Po­lice, GBI charge Laryan Walker with mur­der of Ron­ald Bent­ley in early Sunday morn­ing homi­cide

The Standard Journal - - FRONT PAGE - By Kevin Myrick [email protected]­stan­dard­jour­

Two peo­ple have been ar­rested in con­nec­tion with a late June mur­der that saw a man gunned down in the street.

Po­lice ar­rested Laryan Walker, 30, of 501 Line St., at his res­i­dence on the evening of June 28, then fol­lowed that up with a sec­ond round of charges for 26-year-old Tashon Brown of 217 Pinecrest Cir­cle af­ter he was jailed on un­re­lated charges in Floyd County.

Walker faces charges of felony mur­der, ag­gra­vated as­sault, posses­sion of a firearm dur­ing the com­mis­sion of a crime, and posses­sion of a

firearm by a con­victed felon. He had al­ready been jailed and was be­ing held with­out bond as of press time on mal­ice mur­der and mur­der in the sec­ond de­gree charges.

Cedar­town Po­lice and the Ge­or­gia Bureau of In­ves­ti­ga­tion took Walker into cus­tody with­out in­ci­dent for the shoot­ing death of 40-yearold Ron­ald Mor­ris Bent­ley, who was shot twice in the chest and died on Gib­son Street just three blocks from his res­i­dence at 5:15 a.m.

“Ever since Sunday morn­ing, sev­eral of my in­ves­ti­ga­tors and a few GBI agents have been work­ing long days,” New­some said.

All that time paid off with the re­sult­ing ar­rest on June 28. He added that further in­ves­ti­ga­tory ef­forts by his of­fice and the state agency are ex­pected. Part of those ef­forts pro­duced the charges against Brown, which in­cluded party to the crime of mur­der, party to the crime of felony mur­der, party to the crime of ag­gra­vated as­sault, party to the crime of the posses­sion of a firearm dur­ing the com­mis­sion of a crime, hin­der­ing ap­pre­hen­sion and tam­per­ing with ev­i­dence.

“These two ar­rests were made af­ter an ag­gres­sive in­ves­ti­ga­tion by the Cedar­town Po­lice Depart­ment and the Ge­or­gia Bureau of In­ves­ti­ga­tion,” New­some said. “The sub­se­quent crim­i­nal charges that Walker and Brown now face came as a re­sult of a lengthy con­ver­sa­tion be­tween the Cedar­town Po­lice, GBI and District At­tor­ney Jack Brown­ing.”

The charges came just days fol­low­ing the death of Bent­ley more than a week ago.

Bent­ley just left home and made it to the cor­ner of Park and Gib­son Street when he was gunned down in the early morn­ing shoot­ing.

He was an em­ployee at the Bo­jan­gles in Cedar­town prior to his death. Pay­ton said not much else is known about the vic­tim they can re­lease at this time, or what mo­tive there was yet in the shoot­ing.

Bent­ley wasn’t com­pletely un­known to po­lice in the past. He’d been jailed five times in the past two decades. Start­ing in 1995 and through 2016, Bent­ley was ar­rested on five sep­a­rate oc­ca­sions for mis­de­meanor of­fenses ac­cord­ing to book­ing records from the Polk County Sher­iff’s Of­fice.

Po­lice don’t be­lieve his past ex­pe­ri­ence with law en­force­ment is in­volved with his death over the past week­end.

Bent­ley’s tragic end came at around 5:15 a.m. on June 24, when a call came into Polk County 911 op­er­a­tors to re­port sev­eral gun­shots fired in the area around Gib­son Street.

A fol­low-up call came in at 5:21 a.m. then to re­port the body in the mid­dle of Gib­son Street. Of­fi­cers found Bent­ley dead when they ar­rived at the scene, and Polk County Coro­ner Tony Brazier pro­nounced him dead of­fi­cially at 5:45 a.m.

Bent­ley’s body was taken to the GBI crime lab for ex­am­i­na­tion, and an au­topsy was con­cluded on Tues­day. Brazier said that Bent­ley’s death is of­fi­cially ruled a homi­cide by shoot­ing.

Brazier added that he died as a re­sult of gun­shot wounds to the chest and torso, but did not wish to elab­o­rate due to the na­ture of the in­ves­ti­ga­tion at this time.

Walker was also well known to lo­cal po­lice with a long wrap sheet built up over the past 12 years. Once he turned 18, the ar­rests be­gan for

His wrap sheet pro­vided by the Polk County Sher­iff’s Of­fice be­gins with a 2005 ar­rest on sev­eral charges in­clud­ing ob­struc­tion, sim­ple bat­tery, posses­sion of a firearm or knife for cer­tain crimes, and reck­less con­duct. He fol­lowed that up months later with an ar­rest for armed rob­bery and posses­sion of a firearm or knife dur­ing cer­tain crimes.

Fol­low­ing that, there is a decade of es­ca­la­tion, in­clud­ing a num­ber of drug and weapons charges, three dif­fer­ent ar­rests in 2008 alone for bat­tery and ag­gra­vated as­sault, and more.

New­some said he also was fa­mil­iar with other law en­force­ment agen­cies around the area.

Brown was at the time of this re­port be­ing held at the Floyd County Jail on the un­re­lated charges to the shoot­ing on June 24.

Ron­ald Mor­ris Bent­ley

Laryan Walker

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