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1 arrested, 1 wanted in LaGrange murder investigation

LAGRANGE, Ga. (WRBL) - LaGrange police have made an arrest into a recent murder on Troup Street while one man remains at large.

According to a police report from the LaGrange police, on March 1, 2019, detectives with the assistance of the United States Marshals Service, Heard County Sheriff’s Office and Franklin Police Department arrested Travis McFarland on charges of Murder, Aggravated Assault, Criminal Attempt Armed Robbery, Possession of a Firearm during the Commission of Certain Crimes and Participation in Criminal Street Gang Activity at a home in Heard County.

Omare Atcherson is believed to also be involved in the murder according to LaGrange police. 

As News 3 has reported, back on February 9, 2019 around 8:20 p.m., police responded to the 1500 block of Vernon Road, Wellstar West Georgia Emergency Room, in reference to a person who had been shot. The initial investigation revealed that James Jake Ponder and an acquaintance gave two unknown subjects a ride in the area of Troup Street. While he was driving, the subjects who had just gotten into the car, attempted to rob the victim. During the attempted robbery Ponder was shot and the suspects exited the vehicle and ran away. The acquaintance drove to the emergency room in an attempt to get help for Ponder. Ponder did receive emergency medical aid but later died of his injuries. 

On February 11, 2019, LaGrange police were able to identify 17-year-old  Travis McFarland of LaGrange as being involved in the murder of James Jake Ponder. Warrants were issued for McFarland's arrest for Murder, Aggravated Assault, and Possession of a Firearm during the Commission of Certain Crimes. The police investigation revealed that the victim, Ponder, had communicated with individuals regarding the purchase of a firearm on the night of the incident, and that he was in the area of Troup Street to meet and complete the purchase when the attempted robbery and shooting occurred.

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Omare Atcherson is asked to contact the LaGrange Police Department at (706) 883-2603, Troup County CrimeStoppers at (706) 812-1000 or tips can be submitted through the LaGrange Police Department’s Facebook Page.


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