Shots fired during a possible attempted burglary at a Veterans Parkway shopping center Tuesday has left one woman dead, one in critical condition and investigators searching for a third suspect, Columbus police said.
Police said Achievia Upshaw, 21, and Deaisa Ransom, 24, were shot at the Courtesy Shuttle at 5870 Veterans Parkway, just before the West Britt David Road intersection during a burglary attempt.
Muscogee County Coroner Buddy Bryan said Upshaw was fatally shot in her lower back. She was pronounced dead at 8:21 a.m. at Midtown Medical Center, almost two hours after the 6:30 a.m. shooting. An autopsy on Upshaw’s body is scheduled for Thursday in Atlanta.
Ransom was in critical condition at the hospital. Police said she fled on foot from the scene toward the back-end of the nearby Brittwood Apartments.
Both women were shot near the business’ front door. A Courtesy Shuttle van, parked immediately facing the door, was towed away from the scene with a small bullet hole in its front windshield.
Police Lt. John McMichael said the shooter, a part-owner of the business with his fiancee, was inside sleeping when he “heard the crash of the glass breaking” and confronted the pair.
Someone threw a large object through the front door of the building. Police responded around 6:30 a.m. after the fiancée called 911, police said.
“(The women) were attempting a burglary of the business,” said Maj. Gene Hillhouse.
A black SUV was also involved, McMichael said; it was towed away from the scene along with the van.
Upshaw was fatally shot by business owner Kenneth Hayes while she allegedly attempted to burgle the business, reportedly accompanied by Xavius Donnell Table, 21, and Deaisa Ransom, 24.
During a Monday Recorder’s Court hearing, Sgt. Joseph Hart said Hayes told police he heard the sound of glass breaking during the burglary, and grabbed his Smith & Wesson hand gun to investigate. The part-owner saw one suspect in the store, but was unable to give a clear description of the suspect.