MOULTRIE -- The victim in a Sunday morning shooting and the man charged in his death are kinsmen.
John Leon Strong Jr., 24, of 122 Fifth St. S.W., and Eric Alderman, 25, of 2003 Northside Drive in Valdosta, are cousins, Moultrie Police Sgt. Roger Lindsay said Tuesday. Alderman was shot in the chest about midnight Sunday and died later at Colquitt Regional Medical Center.
Strong turned himself in to police about 11:30 a.m. Monday, Lindsay said. He was taken into custody and charged with the murder of Alderman.
Lindsay said a motive of the shooting is not yet known. The police have conducted several interviews and intend to conduct more as part of their investigation. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is assisting the Moultrie police.
Police reports said Officer Rodney Estrella was on patrol at 12:25 a.m. Sunday and heard Alderman calling for help. Estrella located Alderman in the yard at 122 Fifth St. S.W., where he had collapsed.
A neighbor, Chris Blunt, also heard Alderman's cries for help and aided Estrella, reports said. Blood was found on Alderman's body, so Estrella contacted Colquitt County Emergency Medical Service (EMS) personnel for assistance.
Alderman had difficulty speaking, but reports said he was able to tell Estrella he had been shot and showed him the entry wound on his chest. Estrella asked Alderman who had shot him, and Eric mumbled "Big Mill" or "Big Bill," and Blunt told Estrella he may have meant the nickname "Big Milton."
Reports said Estrella kept asking Alderman who had shot him, but Alderman started asking for water. The water was provided to Alderman from Charlie Hall, who lived at the residence where Alderman was found, and Estrella was able to also get Alderman's first name.
A second officer arrived at the scene, and reports said the two began searching for an exit wound, but they couldn't find it because Alderman was lying on his side -- the same side where the bullet exited his body.
Estrella kept trying to talk to Alderman, but he was barely able to respond and told Estrella he was dying.
First responders came to the scene, but reports said the officers noted Alderman had stopped breathing. EMS arrived and transported him to Colquitt Regional Medical Center, where he later died.
Alderman's aunt, Yolanda Hall, came to the scene when EMS arrived and provided Estrella with information about him, reports said.
Reports said the officers found Alderman's vehicle, a Ford Taurus, at the intersection of Third Avenue Southwest and Fifth Street Southwest, reports said. It was assumed Alderman walked from the vehicle where he was found by Estrella, leaving a blood trail to the residence.
Two handguns were found in the Taurus, but neither was believed to be the gun used to shoot Alderman.
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