Columbia man charged with murder
A Columbia man has been charged with first-degree murder after a gunfight broke out in Popetown in the early hours Tuesday morning.
Gerrod Ball, 39, of Columbia allegedly shot and killed Jaron Burton, 30, of Columbia, on Barbara Drive with police dispatched to the scene at 12:31 a.m. Ball was also shot by Burton in the leg, according to police. Ball was treated at Marion General Hospital and then transported to the Marion County Jail.
Justice Court Judge Gwen Broome set Ball’s bond at $1 million Tuesday afternoon. He remained in custody as of deadline Tuesday.
Lt. Davey Bass said Ball fled on foot but was apprehended within 20 minutes a few blocks away. Bass added there were several witnesses, and their assistance led police to Ball.
A neighbor said she heard five gunshots shortly after midnight and saw Burton lying in the street. The home had crime tape surrounding it Tuesday.
Investigators did not say what led to the initial altercation and encouraged anyone with knowledge to come forward.
“There’s always potential for people who heard things or saw things. Anything that anybody thinks might be relevant, we’d have to hear about it,” Bass said.
Bass said the Marion County Sheriff’s Office also assisted at the scene.
It was the city’s second homicide of 2019. The first was when Shawn Patrick “Chunk” Mitchell, 33, was fatally shot in his Dale Street home Jan. 4. His wife, Holly Ann McCraw Mitchell, was charged in that case.