CONYERS — Two more suspects in the June 15 shooting death of Money White Jr., 23, have been taken into custody in Arkansas, but not before one of the suspects, Keshone Quantarious Smith, 19, was involved in a shootout with police that left one officer dead.
According to Lt. Kim Lucas of the Conyers Police Department, Carlos Penore Davis Jr., 20, was arrested on Sept. 1 and is awaiting extradition from Arkansas, and Smith was arrested on Oct. 2 following the shootout with police in Pine Bluff, Ark.
Pine Bluff Police Detective Lt. Kevin Collins and two other members of the department’s Violent Crimes Unit were involved with an on-going local criminal investigation when they arrived at a motel about 12:05 p.m. and were immediately shot at by two suspects, one of whom is Smith. Collins was shot and died about 2 p.m. at a local hospital. One of the other officers, Lt. Ralph Issac, was also wounded and both suspects were wounded, but none of their wounds are life-threatening.
Lt. Collins had been with the Pine Bluff Police for five years and was the department’s 2017 “Officer of the Year” for rescuing an elderly woman from an apartment fire. Collins is the fifth Pine Bluff officer to be killed in the line of duty, and the first since 1985.
“We’re hurting. We have lost a family member today, so we’re hurting,” Pine Bluff Police Department Chief Kelvin Sergeant said during a press conference. He also asked for privacy and prayers for Collins’ family.
Smith is also one of five suspects in the shooting death of White, who was killed at the Brookfield Apartments on Briar Creek Court in June. Investigators believe the motive behind the shooting was a gang-related robbery that was set up as part of a narcotics transaction.
A news release from the Conyers Police Department confirmed that Smith was wanted in the White murder investigation and expressed the department’s sympathy to their colleagues in Arkansas.
“Conyers Police Chief Gene Wilson and Conyers Police Department would like to express our deepest condolences to Detective Collins’ family and the Pine Bluff Police Department. We also wish for the full recovery of Lt. Ralph Isaac following this tragedy.”
Two suspects in White’s murder were arrested on June 19. Dacquan Whitson, 18, and Christen West, 19, both from Conyers, are being held in the Rockdale County Jail.
Whitson has been charged with party to the crime of armed robbery and party to the crime of felony murder.
West has been charged with making false statements, and use of a communication facility in committing or facilitating the commission an act which constitutes a felony.
A third suspect, Desmond Marks, 21, was arrested in Pine Bluff on Aug. 14 on multiple warrants from the Conyers Police Department, including murder, armed robbery, and two gang-related charges. According to Lucas, Marks fought extradition and the Rockdale County District Attorney’s Office had to seek a Governor’s Warrant to get Marks transported to Conyers on Sept. 26.
Davis was the fourth suspect arrested in the case. He is also facing charges of murder, armed robbery, and two gang-related charges.
Smith is the fifth suspect. He has been charged with capital murder in Arkansas and on Oct. 7 a judge denied bond. He will be back in court in Arkansas on Nov. 18. It is not known when he will be extradited to Georgia.
According to Lt. Lucas, the investigation into White’s murder will continue.
“We do not have any additional suspects outstanding at this time,” Lucas said, “however, the investigation will continue until we are satisfied that all responsible parties in Money White Jr.’s murder are apprehended.”