Macon's police department announced it has placed an officer on administrative leave and opened an internal investigation after the officer fatally shot a man outside the Kroger supermarket in Midtown.
A police spokeswoman said the shooting followed a struggle with a man as they tried to serve him with a warrant around 3:30 p.m. on Friday.
The victim was identified by Bibb County coroner Leon Jones as 49-year-old Sammie Davis Jr., of 1063 Hillyer Avenue, in the nearby Unionville neighborhood. That address is about a half-mile from the supermarket.
Jones says Davis died around 5 p.m. after being shot multiple times by police.
In a news release issued at 9 p.m., police spokeswoman Jami Gaudet said Precinct 3 officer Clayton Sutton was placed on administrative leave. She said this was "standard policy when an officer is involved in an investigation of this nature."
She said Sutton has worked in the police department for six-and-a-half years.
Earlier Friday evening, we asked for an opportunity to interview Chief Mike Burns about the shooting. We were told he would be unavailable to answer questions until an investigation is complete next week.
In the news release, Gaudet said the police Criminal Investigations Division and Internal Affairs Division are investigating the shooting.
According to Gaudet, Chief Burns says the case will be sent to the District Attorney's office for a final review after the criminal investigation is complete.
Witnesses said Sammie Davis Jr. was known in the neighborhood as Junebug and often sat outside the supermarket.
LaDarius Lowe said Davis would sometimes ask for money and he would give him a dollar or two.
He said he knew Davis for more than ten years. "He never bothered anyone, he never harmed anyone," Lowe said.
Within minutes after the shooting, a dozen police vehicles including two crime-scene vans pulled into the supermarket parking lot.
Detectives crouched on the ground and took measurements of the shooting scene, on the north end of the parking lot near English Avenue.
Firefighters were seen apparently recovering an object from the supermarket roof.