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Statesboro apartment tenant sends would-be home invader to the hospital
Man shoots suspect, who is then arrested at Claxton hospital
Zion Cornelius
Zion Cornelius

While defending his residence, a Statesboro apartment tenant wounded a home invader, sending the invader to the hospital where he was later arrested.

According to a release from Capt. Jared Akins with the Statesboro Police Department,

SPD officers and detectives responded at 1 p.m. Thursday to a report of shots fired at The Vault Apartments on Statesboro Place Circle.

“Upon arriving, they observed shell casings, blood, and obvious damage to an apartment,” Akins said in the release. “The tenants of the apartment were cooperative and interviewed by detectives on scene.”

The tenants told detectives that a man in a mask along with two women forcibly entered their apartment. They said a physical struggle occurred between the masked man and one of the tenants.

“During (the struggle) the tenant used his lawfully possessed handgun to shoot the male suspect,” Akins said. “The suspects fled the apartment and the tenants called 911.”

Akins said SPD dispatchers began contacting local hospitals in an attempt to locate the wounded suspect.

They discovered that a man, later identified as Zion Cornelius of Savannah was being treated for a non-life-threatening gunshot wound at Evans Memorial Hospital in Claxton.

Akins said Evans County Sheriff’s deputies and Claxton Police officers went to the hospital and spoke with Cornelius, 21, and his girlfriend, Antania Sanders, 20, also of Savannah.

SPD detectives arrived soon after to interview Sanders and Cornelius.

“Based on evidence gathered from the scene, Flock camera footage, and interviews with witnesses and the suspects themselves, Cornelius and Sanders were arrested and charged with home invasion first degree and aggravated assault,” Akins said.

Both were transported to the Bulloch County Jail where they remain pending further judicial action.

Antania Sanders
Antania Sanders

“SPD would like to thank the Evans County Sheriff’s Office and Claxton Police Department for their tremendous assistance in this case,” Akins said.

Anyone with information in this case is requested to contact Senior Detective Dustin Cross at (912) 764-9911 or submit an anonymous tip to or by texting 274637 and entering “TIPSSPD” plus your message.

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