Suspect arrested for fatal shooting at Reynolds, E. 49th St.

Published: Dec. 21, 2016 at 3:10 PM EST|Updated: Dec. 21, 2016 at 11:23 PM EST
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(Source: WTOC)
(Source: WTOC)

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - An Ardsley Park man has died after being shot in front of his home on the 400 block of 49th Street, Wednesday.

Police responded to the call around 9:30 a.m. and found 35-year-old Joshua DeBerry suffering a life-threatening gunshot wound. He was transported to Memorial, where he later succumbed to his injuries.

Metro arrested 25-year-old Tamaron Varner at his house on the 700 block of E. 39th Street, around 11 a.m. Varner is also facing pending charges in a separate shooting that seriously injured a 48-year-old man on Tuesday, Dec. 20.

Investigators believe DeBerry was shot during a dispute with Varner regarding a business transaction. Evidence then linked Varner to the shooting that happened just a day before.

We are hearing from several neighbors who heard gunshots and witnessed the aftermath.

Witnesses tell us DeBerry was shot in front of his home, suffering severe injuries to his stomach. We're told this is a very safe and friendly neighborhood. This was the last thing anyone expected just days before Christmas.

"I heard what sounded like three loud pops."

"I heard what sounded like bang...bang, bang...bang."

Neighbors came running out of their homes to see what was going on, but they never expected to find a crime scene at the corner of 49th and Reynolds Street.

"I could see a man lying in the street and a visibly distraught person next to him, which was probably his girlfriend or wife," said Camille Russo, a neighbor.

"I feel terrible for his family who apparently witnessed some of this," said Jo Hailey, a neighbor.

"Investigators believe this shooting happened during a dispute of some sort," said SCMPD Public Information Officer Eunicia Baker.

"The word is that someone owed someone else money," Russo said.

Several neighbors ran to help the man who was lying in front of his own home until EMS arrived.

"He had obviously been hit and was bleeding, and it was pretty severe," said Russo.

Many folks are still in shock about what they saw, including the man's family who was too shaken up to talk to us on camera. I'm told this family has not lived in this area very long, but regardless of whether folks were acquainted with them or not, most neighbors are grieving for this family just days before Christmas.

"Nothing that you do justifies being shot steps outside of your own home," Russo said.

Varner is charged with murder, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime in DeBerry's shooting death. In the other shooting, he's charged with criminal attempted murder, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime.

4th District Alderman Julian Miller said crime continues to be the issue that the city faces. He spoke about the continuing effort to keep violent repeat offenders off the streets.

"And it is exactly what we are trying to stop with the End Gun Violence: Step Forward program, with the initiatives that our police department has put forward. With the legislation that our representative Jesse Petrea is trying to put forward," said Miller. Miller added the latest murder is a terrible tragedy.

Miller said, "You're going to have disputes, and occasionally some are going to turn into violent disputes. But if we could get the potential suspect out of here, and keep him out of here, we'll have a safer community."

Wednesday's shooting death marks the 50th homicide this year. In 2015, 53 people were killed in Savannah.

Anyone with information on this case should contact the SCMPD tip line by dialing 912.525.3124. Information may also be forwarded to CrimeStoppers at 912.234.2020. Tipsters remain anonymous and may qualify for a cash reward.

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