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Gun buy-back being held in wake of pregnant Athens woman's shooting death

Auriel Callaway

By Joe Johnson

An uncle of the pregnant Athens woman who was fatally shot earlier this week is sponsoring a gun buy-back in an attempt to reduce gun violence in Athens.

Bryant Gantt, uncle of Auriel “Thumpa” Callaway, posted on his Facebook page that the event was scheduled to be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday at VFW Post 2872, 835 Sunset Drive.

“This is a ‘No question – no ask’ gun buy-back, meaning I don’t care who you are or where the guns came from. I just want them off the streets,” Gantt stated in his social media post.

“For every gun turned in, you will receive a $100-dollar bill," Gantt said.

“It’s time to take a stand against improper gun control and gun violence,” Gantt added. “Unfortunately, what better time to stand than right now right here at home!!! Please come out and turn in the guns and continue working on making our communities a safe place for everyone.”

Gantt’s 24-year-old niece was killed Monday night at Clarke Gardens apartments off Barnett Shoals Road.

According to Athens-Clarke County police, a fight between two groups at the public housing complex broke out at about 9:45 p.m. and the altercation escalated to the point of gun play.

As the shooting erupted, police said that Callaway was struck by a bullet while trying to move her 3-year-old son to safety.

Callaway later died at the hospital where her unborn child was also pronounced deceased.

After identifying 26-year-old Clarke Gardens resident Kiresa Shanice Cooper as a suspect, authorities located and arrested her Wednesday evening in Cobb County, according to police.

Cooper was initially charged with felony murder and aggravated assault, though police said additional charges were expected.The investigation into the deadly incident continued and police said there could be additional arrests.

Police requested that anyone who had cellphone video footage of the incident to share it with them.

Police asked that anyone with information or video related to the incident contact detectives Scott Black or Paul Johnson at (706) 613-3330.

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