Crew accused of firing 5 dozen shots towards apartment with kids in the yard
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Blue lights lit up the west end of Milledgeville shortly after midnight Saturday morning, as a car full of men unloaded more than 60 rounds in the direction of an apartment in the Wray Homes/West End projects.
The drive-by shooting was followed by a high-speed chase, which culminated at Central City/Bonner Park, where one suspect was found hiding in a restroom by the basketball courts and another in the bushes. A third suspect, meanwhile, was tackled by a law enforcement officer, while a fourth suspect managed to get away.
Arrested were Keymon Lacarl Johnson, 18, Tyler Lemont Pounds, 17, and Travis Terrell Simmons, 22. Each was charged with nine counts of aggravated assault, four counts of third degree child cruelty, as well as one count each of reckless conduct, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime and unauthorized discharge of a firearm within 50 yards of a public highway.
Simmons also was charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Milledgeville Police Chief Dray Swicord said that he was "extremely glad to have Travis Simmons off the streets," adding that "he's responsible for probably 75-80 percent of the shootings and gun violence we've had lately."
Simmons was out on bond during the weekend incident and "had 40 years remaining on an existing sentence," according to the chief.
"It's safe to say that Travis Simmons will probably never see the light of day again," Swicord added.
Asked if the drive-by was gang-related and retaliation from last week's murder of Chavonta Braddy on the Southside, Swicord said "absolutely."
Based on the criminal charges, there were 13 people present around the apartment, some standing outside. The nine aggravated assault charges stem from one for every adult present, while the four cruelty to children account for the four kids present.
Roughly 60 shell casings were recovered, including numerous AR-15 rifle rounds.
Det. Nick Reonas was patrolling the projects and responded to the gunfire. Reonas technically wasn't on-duty with the MPD, but rather was working a security detail with the Milledgeville Housing Authority. The Housing Authority contracts with the MPD to provide security for Wray Homes and Graham Homes. MPD officers and detectives working the detail still use MPD patrol cars, however.
According to an MPD press release, "Reonas was patrolling in the 1100 Block of West Montgomery Street when he heard multiple gunshots coming from the area. Detective Reonas observed a silver sedan with several subjects actively shooting from the vehicle at several individuals in the 1100 Block of West Montgomery Street. Detective Reonas immediately activated his lights and sirens in an attempt to stop the vehicle but the vehicle fled at a high rate of speed. Detective Reonas and multiple other PD units chased the vehicle until it wrecked on the grounds of Central City Park near the intersection of West Hancock Street and South Irwin Street. Several male subjects fled from the vehicle. Three male subjects were taken into custody after a brief foot pursuit and assistance from Georgia Department of Corrections K-9 Unit, Baldwin Sheriff Georgia, Georgia College Public Safety and Troopers with the Georgia Department of Public Safety."
Swicord called the response by all of the different law enforcement agencies "incredible team work."
Anyone with any information on the fourth suspect, still at large, is asked to call the MPD tip line at 478-414-4413.