Authorities: Four arrests in Waffle House shooting
(Columbia) March 2, 2007 - Authorities say they've made four arrests in connection with a shooting in front of a Two Notch Road Waffle House. Three of them are charged with murder.
"This was a gunfight, with bullets flying all over the place," says Sheriff Leon Lott. Those bullets, Sheriff Lott says, fired by members of two rival gangs shooting at each other the night of February 19th.
Investigators say the gun battle began with a fight between two opposing gang members in the parking lot of the Waffle House. Then, other gang members started shooting at each other.
Brian Wright was caught in the crossfire. Lott says Wright, a 15-year-old student at Blythewood Academy, knew he was associating with gang members. He died of a gunshot wound to the head.
Sheriff Lott says, "I think if anything this just signals how crazy it is to be in a gang. That gang life is not going to get you anywhere but either dead or get you arrested."
The Sheriff's Department has four suspects in custody. Tyson Boone, Oliver Feldman and Eugene Patterson face murder and other charges. Jerome Christopher Thompson is accused of aggravated breach of peace and gun possession by a minor.
"This is a tragedy in not only have we lost Brian Wright, but we have these other individuals, these young people who have thrown their life away. They're charged with murder, they'll probably serve lengthy time in jail, and all for disrespect."
Lott predicts more suspects, more arrests. At this point, Brian's father, William Wright, says, "I got to give them credit, they did not let me down, they kept me informed of everything."
Wright says, "Justice will be served that's for sure, you know it's been many nights, get up, going through a lot of pain, crying, and a lot of hurt."
And he has a warning for gang members, "Your day is coming, gangs don't get you nowhere in life, what these guys going to get here, was it really worth it?"
Reported by Jack Kuenzie
Updated 10:50pm by Bryce Mursch