Police have arrest warrants out for two men suspected in a recent string of shooting deaths, Columbia Police Department Chief Geoff Jones said Wednesday.
Jones and Mayor Brian Treece spoke at a news conference about shootings that have claimed four lives since Sept. 13. Jones ticked off a list of those killed in homicides in Columbia this year. Absent from the list was a man killed Thursday by multiple gunshots, whose body police found while responding to a burglary report.
Jones said police are investigating whether that death was a justifiable homicide.
Jones said Aaron Harris is wanted on suspicion of second-degree murder and unlawful use of a weapon in the death of E’quan Spain on Sept. 14. Harris was driving the vehicle Spain was shot while riding in, according to a probable cause statement filed in the case against another suspect in Spain’s killing.
Police say Michael Leon Anderson III accidentally shot Spain as they were firing from their vehicle at another vehicle.
Jones said police are also seeking Javion Lawhorn-Wallace on suspicion of second-degree murder, armed criminal action and unlawful use of a weapon in connection with the Sept. 13 death of Nadria Wright, 18.
“Someone knows who committed these murders,” Jones said. “Those who committed these murders have crossed the line and for the safety and well-being of our community must be held accountable. If you know something, say something.”
He said police have no leads in the double-killing Sunday of Antonio Houston, 36, and Danielle Marine, 33, who were found shot on the front lawn of a home near McKee Street and Rice Road in northeast Columbia.
Treece said each act of violence has seemed to spawn more violence.
“I feel like there is a hurricane of violence hovering over our community right now, with one side shooting at the other side, and someone fills those shoes and starts shooting back at the other side,” Treece said.
Treece said the violence is a community problem that is “broad-based and multifaceted” and affects everyone in Columbia.
“This is in no uncertain terms a public health crisis,” Treece said. “The economic cost … is simply unsustainable.”
Treece said the community needs a broad approach with multiple solutions to address the violence and crime.
More than two months have passed since Columbia Police Chief Geoff Jones promised a crackdown on gun violence in an interview on KFRU. The five fatal shootings in September in Columbia mark the most in the city in a month since November 2000.
Stay with ABC 17 News for more information on this developing story.