Four arrested after “drug transaction gone bad” leads to I-20 shooting

Four arrested after “drug transaction gone bad” leads to I-20 shooting

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - Four people have been arrested in a New Year’s Eve shooting that injured two people on I-20.

On December 31, 2018, Pearl investigators responded to a local hospital after a man and woman arrived with gunshot wounds. The female victim suffered from gunshot wounds to both legs and the male victim sustained a gunshot wound to the face.

Investigators were able to determine the shooting happened on I-20 westbound near Highway 49.

An examination revealed three bullet holes in the driver’s side of the vehicle.

After interviewing the victims, investigators believe the shooting stemmed from an incident that happened on George Kersh Drive in Pearl. it was learned that the victims had contact with the shooter(s) during a drug transaction gone bad.

Investigators were confident this was not a random act of violence of a road rage incident.

On January 18, 2019, Edward Romelo Mosely, of Pearl, was arrested on unrelated charges. With assistance from the Mississippi Bureau of Investigations, Investigators learned that Mosely was present at and played a role in the shooting. On February 7, 2019, Mosely was formally charged with two counts of attempted murder and one count of drive-by shooting.

Lerner Russell and Edward Mosely were arrested and charged with attempted murder and drive-by shooting. Source: Pearl PD
Lerner Russell and Edward Mosely were arrested and charged with attempted murder and drive-by shooting. Source: Pearl PD

Investigators also identified two other suspects, Lerner Charles Russell and Ontario Dedmond Smiley, both of Richland. Russell and Smiley were both arrested and charged with two counts of attempted murder and one count of drive-by shooting.

Investigators then identified a fourth participant in the shooting, Freddie Markeith Ratliff, of Jackson, who later turned himself into the police department. Ratliff was also charged with two counts of attempted murder and one count of drive-by shooting.

Freddie Ratliff and Ontario Smiley were arrested and charged with attempted murder and drive-by shooting. Source: Pearl PD
Freddie Ratliff and Ontario Smiley were arrested and charged with attempted murder and drive-by shooting. Source: Pearl PD

This case will be presented to the Rankin County District Attorney’s Office for prosecution. All four individuals are in the custody of the Rankin County Sheriff’s Department Adult Detention Facility without bond.

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