Auburn shootings suspect turns self in

June 12, 2012 at 10:28 PM
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MONTGOMERY, Ala., June 12 (UPI) -- A man suspected of shooting three people to death and wounding three others near Auburn University turned himself in Tuesday, police in Alabama said.

Montgomery County Sheriff D.T. Marshall said Desmonte Leonard, 22, turned himself in to U.S. Marshals at the federal courthouse in Montgomery, CNN reported.

Auburn Police Chief Tommy Dawson had said Tuesday police would find Leonard "no matter where he is."

Dawson denied a news report a tactical team raided the wrong house Monday night in Montgomery trying to find Leonard.

"I want to thank them for their efforts. They did exactly as they should have done. They had a lot of manpower out there last night," Dawson told a news conference.

Montgomery Police Chief Kevin Murphy told reporters there had been reason to believe Leonard was in the attic at some point. He said police saw movement in the attic after calling Leonard out but by the time they went into the house, no one was there.

"We didn't go into that house foot by foot. We took it inch by inch," he said. "We didn't want anybody else to get hurt. We did everything right."

Leonard's mother said she had not spoken to her son, reported. The police chief said Leonard's mother wanted to send a message to her son urging him to surrender.

Leonard is accused of killing three people, including former Auburn University football players Ed Christian and Ladarious Phillips, and injuring three others during a weekend party at an apartment complex near the university.

Two other people have been arrested, police said. Gabriel Thomas, 41, was picked up Sunday night and Jeremy Thomas, 18, was arrested Monday morning. The two Montgomery men, whose relationship was unclear, are accused of hindering authorities in their efforts to find Leonard.

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