3 charged with murder for Martinez home invasion

Three men will face murder charges for a fatal home invasion last month.


The men, along with another who was shot dead during the Feb. 29 attempt to rob a Martinez apartment, targeted the homeowner, believing he had cash for buying video games, according to authorities.

Leonard Jamal Wal­ton, 18, of May­wood Drive in Mar­tinez; Jose Lopez-Gamero, 21, of North Belair Road in Evans; and Edward Albert Brown III, 19, of Bridgeton Road in Au­gusta, were indicted for murder, criminal attempt to commit robbery, burglary and simple battery.

The murder charge was lodged because Justin Anthony Stephens, 19, died while a felony was being committed.

Authorities say Barrett’s 15-year-old son twice shot Stephens as he and Walton forced their way into the Cedar Lane apartment and struggled with his father.

Lopez-Gamero and Brown acted as the getaway driver and lookout, respectively, authorities said.

Barrett told police he heard a knock on the door of his apartment about 7:30 p.m. When he answered, Stephens and Walton, wearing masks, forced their way in, he told authorities.

Barrett’s son saw the men struggling with his father and got a rifle from a bedroom. After yelling at the men to leave, the boy fired two shots.

Both bullets hit Stephens, who died just outside the apartment door.

Auth­orities say Brown got into a car driven by Lopez-Gamero and went to a nearby convenience store; Walton later joined them in the car; and they then went to a motel near Interstate 20.

The three men are being held in the Columbia County Detention Center.



Wed, 11/22/2017 - 18:38

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