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2 men arrested in drug-related murder

Incident took place March 9 at The Grove Apartments

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2 men arrested in drug-related murder

Jaden ThinhLe, left, and Michael Jay Williams

A Statesboro man faces murder charges for the drug-related shooting death of a man at The Grove Apartments March 9.

Jaden Thinh Le of Lanier Drive is being held without bond in the Bulloch County Jail, charged with felony murder. Also in connection with the crime, Michael Jay Williams, of Sherwood Court in Rincon, is charged with obstruction and giving false information. Additional charges are pending, said Statesboro police Deputy Chief Rob Bryan.

Deniro Arness Smith, of Rincon, was the victim of "a drug deal gone bad," he told the Statesboro Herald last week.

Smith, 22, was the victim of multiple gunshot wounds during an altercation around 10:50 p.m. the night of March 9 at The Grove Apartments on Brampton Avenue.

"There was definitive evidence it (involved) a drug deal that went awry," Bryan said Monday.

Officers responding to a call about "shots fired" discovered Smith injured at the scene. He died from his wounds a short time later, he said.

While officers arrested Le, 20, and Williams, 24, Friday, police did not release information about their arrests until Monday, as the investigation was ongoing and incomplete at the time, Bryan said.

Further charges against each suspect are possible as the investigation continues, he said.

Statesboro police Detective Tommy Brown is the lead investigator in the case. Investigators from the District Attorney's Office are assisting with the case.

Anyone with information concerning this case is asked to contact the Statesboro Police Department at (912) 764-9911.

Tips may also be submitted online at or by sending the text "TIPSSPD" followed by the message to 274637 (CRIMES). All information is strictly confidential, he said.

Herald reporter Holli Deal Saxon may be reached at (912) 489-9414.


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