Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office Shooting Being Investigated by GBI
Valdosta, GA – On Wednesday, April 9, at approximately 6:00 PM, Lowndes County Sheriff’s deputies were involved in a shooting at the Econolodge, 3022 James Road in Valdosta. Lowndes County Sheriff Chris Prine requested the Georgia Bureau of Investigation investigate the incident.
Initial information provided by the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office is that deputies were in the process of arresting Dexter Pernell Bethea, 42, during a drug transaction at the hotel when Bethea tried to hit the deputies with his vehicle as he was eluding the arrest. The deputies fired at Bethea in an attempt to stop the vehicle and prevent them from being hit by the vehicle. Bethea was deceased at the scene.
During a search of Bethea’s vehicle, agents seized a quantity of cash and what is suspected to be cocaine and marijuana.
Bethea resided at 915 Lake Park Road in Valdosta. An autopsy will be done on Bethea at the GBI Crime Lab in Macon.
At the scene, deputies arrested four people who were also involved in the drug transaction. Christopher Williams, 40, of 1231 Albany Street, Jacksonville, Florida was charged with Possession of Cocaine, Possession of Heroin, Possession of Tools for Commission of a Crime, and Pimping. Connie Wood, 32, of 1150 Ruth Ave., Jacksonville Beach, Florida was charged with Possession of Cocaine, Possession of Heroin, Possession of Tools for Commission of a Crime, and Prostitution. Jasmine Riley, 24, of 604 McDougal Street, Valdosta was charged with Violation of Probation. Michael Hendley, 39, of 1713 Toni Terrace, Valdosta was charged with Violation of Probation.
The GBI will conduct a thorough investigation to determine what occurred during the incident. When the investigation is completed it will be turned over to District Attorney David Miller for any action he deems appropriate.
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SAC Steve Turner 229/225-4090