Grovetown homeowners reflect on drive-by shooting, access to weapons

Crime News

GROVETOWN, GA. (WJBF) – A suspect in a 2020 drive-by shooting in Columbia County pleaded guilty to federal weapons charges this month. The people who live there say they can finally breathe easy.

A bullet hole on the pole of a home and remnants of shootings along a brick wall on the side of the same dwelling could still be seen one year later in a quiet Columbia County neighborhood to feel safe sleeping again.

“It was in the evening, you know 10…10:30 and we heard this noise, which end up being gunshots,” said Mary Cheely.

“I’ve got a couple of guns and I’ve never even loaded them until that night because I thought someone was coming through the door,” Jordan Tejeda.

Renetta: Homeowners in this quiet Columbia County neighborhood, on Bowen Falls off William Few Parkway in Grovetown can remember a driveby shooting from February 2020. That’s when Mary Cheely saw it all happen.

“Car was coming down the side road and when it got to my big tree right here, the guy in the back he was sitting in the back just started shooting at the house,” said Cheely.

25-year-old William Austin Hunter and 28-year-old Patrick Allen Scott were the suspects in the case. Police say the convicted felons committed the crime with a sawed off shotgun and silencer–both unregistered, while in possession of marijuana. They apprehended Hunter and Scott shortly after at Hunter’s home with similar weapons–an SKS rifle, ammunition and magazines. They also located another sawed off shotgun, a shortened rifle and a pistol.

“I just don’t understand why any homeowner would need those types of weapons,” said Cheely.

This comes just a few days after President Biden reiterates his call for Congress to pass legislation to reduce gun violence. The administration’s six initial actions include a rule to stop ghost guns or firearm kits and a rule that makes clear when a pistol turns into a short-barreled rifle.

“Where there’s a will there’s a way. People will get what they want, if they really want it,” said Tejeda.

Hunter and Scott both face federal charges too. SOC

Photojournalist: Gary Hipps

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