Woman dies of gunshot at home

An Augusta mother was shot and killed by her ex-boyfriend in front of her 2-year-old daughter early Sunday morning, police said.


Sirlinda Vernesa Price, 34, of 2211-F Southgate Drive in Providence Place Apartments, was shot multiple times about 1:35 a.m. She was at home with her current boyfriend when 42-year-old Earl Demetrius Dinkins kicked down her door and opened fire with a small-caliber handgun, according to Richmond County sheriff's Lt. Scott Peebles. Ms. Price died at the scene, but her boyfriend, Melroy Stephen Browman, 38, managed to drive himself to a hospital. Investigators said they were withholding the name of the hospital out of fear that Mr. Dinkins might try to kill Mr. Browman.

Police believe that Mr. Dinkins was enraged by the victim's new relationship, and several witnesses saw Mr. Dinkins arguing with the victims just before the shooting, Lt. Peebles said.

"I guess he was upset that she is moving on and with someone else," he said. "Basically he is an estranged boyfriend."

The 2-year-old girl is the daughter of Mr. Dinkins and Ms. Price, Lt. Peebles said. She was not physically harmed in the attack and is now being cared for by Ms. Price's family.

Authorities were searching the area for Mr. Dinkins, whom they consider dangerous, but acknowledged that he already might have fled the county. He is wanted on charges of murder, aggravated assault, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime and burglary. He is believed to be traveling in a black 1997 GMC Jimmy with a Georgia retired Army tag of RA4511.

Anyone with information on Mr. Dinkins is asked to call the Richmond County Sheriff's Office at (706) 821-1080.

Reach Adam Folk at (706) 823-3339 or adam.folk@augustachronicle.com.