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Metter murder suspect arrested
Man wanted in Nov., 2017 incident
w lanier
Akeem Ajima Lanier

United States marshals and Candler County sheriff’s deputies arrested a man Friday who was wanted in the November 2017 murder of a Metter victim.

Akeem Ajima Lanier, 29, was arrested without incident at a residence on North Leroy Street in Metter, said Georgia Bureau of Investigation Special Agent-in-Charge Bill Bodrey.

Warrants against Lanier were taken out Nov. 13 on charges of murder, aggravated assault, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony. He is suspected in the Nov. 11 murder of James Edward Butler Jr., which occurred at a residence on Hodges Street in Metter, he said.

When Candler County sheriff’s deputies and members of the U.S. Marshals Service Southeast Regional Fugitive Task Force located Lanier, they also found narcotics and a firearm inside the residence. The GBI Southeastern Regional Drug Enforcement Office is assisting with the drug investigation, he said.

Metter police and Bulloch County sheriff’s investigators also assisted in the arrest, said Candler County Sheriff John Miles.

Around 12:30 a.m. on Nov. 11, Metter police were dispatched to a call regarding an individual being shot at a residence on Hodges Street in Metter. When officers arrived, they found Butler, 27, dead at the scene. Another individual, Byron Brown, 28, was also shot and was airlifted to Savannah for medical treatment.

Miles thanked the U.S. Marshals Service “for assisting ... and for their diligent efforts in locating and arresting this dangerous individual.” He also expressed appreciation for all agencies involved in the investigation and apprehension of Lanier.

“Without a constant effort between agencies, law enforcement operations would be more difficult,” he said.


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


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