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Evans murder suspect found in Statesboro
Charged in early Sunday shooting at The Gladiator Club in Claxton
Mickey Lewis Byrd Jr.
Mickey Lewis Byrd Jr.

A man suspected in an Evans County homicide was captured Thursday at an apartment complex in Statesboro.

Agents with the U.S. Marshals Service Fugitive Task Force out of Savannah apprehended Mickey Lewis Byrd Jr., 27, of Claxton, at a Madison Meadows apartment, said John Durden, special agent-in-charge of the Statesboro Region 5 office of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

Byrd is charged in the Sunday shooting death of Steven Craig Moore, 22, also of Claxton, he said.

The shooting took place early Sunday morning at The Gladiator Club, a social event venue on Oxendine Drive near Claxton. The Gladiator Club is “not a violent place or a nightclub” and is not known to be a dangerous place, he said. The shooting, which took place outside the building, is not believed to be connected to a youth social event taking place inside at the time, he said.

The homicide is believed to be gang-related, with both Byrd and Moore being in the same group and reportedly having had an ongoing conflict. A statement released by the GBI Atlanta office late Thursday read: “The investigation shows that the victim and suspect had an argument over a gang-related dispute … which led to a shooting. The two involved in the altercation were purported members of the Gangster Disciples gang. The GBI is currently conducting searches to further the investigation.”

After the shooting, Moore was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead. An autopsy Monday showed he died of multiple gunshot wounds. 

GBI agents, along with Evans County Sheriff Randall Tippins and his deputies, had been seeking Byrd since Sunday, and the U.S. Marshals Service kept “round the clock” surveillance on Madison Meadows, the apartment complex on Packinghouse Road in Statesboro where agents located Byrd Thursday afternoon.

He is being held without bond in the Bulloch County Jail, charged with murder and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Bulloch County sheriff’s Chief Deputy Bill Black said Byrd was also being held on probation violation charges, and Durden said “additional charges may be forthcoming.”

Anyone with information is urged to contact the GBI Statesboro office at (912) 871-1121, he said.

 

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

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