Smith charged in Whittaker Street murder

Published 12:47 am Monday, October 10, 2016

A Greenville man was charged with murder Sunday afternoon after a heated argument became violent.

Jermario Smith, a 28-year-old black male, is currently being held without bond at the Butler County Jail for his alleged involvement in the shooting death of a 58-year-old black male on Whittaker Street shortly after 2 p.m. Sunday.

Officers received a call of the shooting in progress and found the victim lying in the front yard of a Whittaker Street residence.

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Officers attempted to treat the gunshot victim until paramedics arrived shortly on the scene, though the victim was pronounced deceased due to the multiple gunshot wounds he received.

Officers immediately began to investigate and developed a suspect according to witness statements and evidence collected at the scene of the crime.

Smith was located an hour later and taken into custody, where he was transported to the Greenville Police Department for questioning.

“Investigators confronted Mr. Smith with the evidence we had gathered up to that point,” said Greenville Police Department captain Justin Lovvorn.

“Mr. Smith then confessed to shooting the victim.  The victim and Mr. Smith had been involved in a disagreement just prior to the shooting.  The argument got out of hand and escalated into a shooting.”

Investigators have found no evidence thus far to insinuate that the victim of the shooting had a weapon of any type.

Investigators also processed an additional location after receiving information of where the weapon that was used by the suspect in the shooting may be located.  They were able to recover multiple weapons upon visiting that location, including the weapon possibly used in the shooting.

Additional tests will be conducted at the Department of Forensics to verify that the weapon was indeed used in the shooting.

“I would like to commend the tireless efforts of both patrol and investigations in this case,” Lovvorn said.

“They worked diligently to help ensure the safety of the citizens of Greenville by quickly developing and locating the suspect in this case.”

The victim’s name is being withheld at this time until proper notification of his next of kin is made.