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Grand jury indicts six for witness tampering

 

From left, Jarvis Alexander, Jo Ann Davis, Latoya Gavin, Nicholas Edwards, Morris Lanier and Joanne Smith

From left, Jarvis Alexander, Jo Ann Davis, Latoya Gavin, Nicholas Edwards, Morris Lanier and Joanne Smith

 

 

Dispatch Staff Report

 

 

A grand jury in Lowndes County has indicted six people connected to three separate cases where witnesses were intimidated or bribed. Four of those indictments were handed down in connection where the alleged crime victim was bribed by the assailant, his mom and his girlfriend.  

 

Jarvis Alexander, 22, who was indicted on charge of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, was charged with bribery, along with his mother, Jo Ann Davis, 53, and girlfriend, Latoya Gavin, 32. They allegedly bribed the assault victim, Nicholas Edwards, 34, who was indicted for accepting the bribe.  

 

Alexander was arrested and charged in September for allegedly shooting into Edwards' car outside the suspect's home in Lowndes County. 

 

Two other cases where shooting suspects allegedly sought to intimidate witnesses also resulted in indictments during the current circuit court session. 

 

Morris Lanier, 31, who was charged with three counts of aggravated assault for allegedly firing shots outside the Princess Theater in March 2017, was indicted on two charges of intimidating a witness to the shooting, while Joanne Smith, 36, was indicted on two charges of intimidating a witness in connection with the same shooting. One of those incidents occurred the night of a separate shooting outside the Premier Lounge nightclub in November 2017 in which a Columbus police officer shot a man who appeared to be pointing a gun in the direction of the officer. 

 

Among other indictments handed down this week, Devonte Harris, 23, of West Point will be tried for possession of a firearm on school property. Harris was arrested after police responded to calls of shots fired at the parking lot of the Columbus High School football stadium during a September football game. Witnesses identified Harris as the shooter and he was taken into custody and charged. 

 

Robert Perkins was indicted for sexual battery after his Nov. 11 arrest for having sexual relations with a female under the age of 16. Perkins was 22 at the time of the alleged incident.

 

 

 

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