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Suspects in UGA North Campus shooting were in possession of assault rifles

Updated: Aug 1

Mark Luke Jarrett

By Joe Johnson

Two men reportedly were in possession of assault rifles when they allegedly shot an Athens man this month on the University of Georgia's North Campus.

The gun used to shoot D’Andre Smyles was believed by police to be a .380 caliber semiautomatic pistol that was found in the suspects’ white 2017 Chevrolet Corvette, but officers also located two AK 47 assault rifles in the vehicle’s trunk, according to UGA police.

The car’s occupants were identified by police as Zachary Thomas Baker, 25, and Mark Luke Jarrett, 24, who have the same address on Cedar Shoals Drive. The arrest report did not indicate whether one or both suspects were suspected of shooting a gun at a group of people at the intersection of Fulton and South Jackson streets, an area known as UGA’s Innovation District.

Zachary Thomas Baker

The incident happened at about 2:17 a.m. July 22, when a UGA police officer reported that he was patrolling on East Broad Street and heard gunshots just south of his location, around Fulton and South Jackson streets.

Upon arrival at to the area, the officer reported that “I saw a disarrayed scene, with people running in in different directions, with “some taking shelter in landscaping on the side of Fulton, crouching and screaming.”

A police officer provided Smyles with first aid for a gunshot wound to his knee, and as he was being prepared for transport to the hospital, a second gunshot wound to his ankle was noticed, according to the police report.

The officer's report indicated that while rendering aid to the victim he overheard someone say an "AK" or "AR" type rifle had been fired at them.

Smyles reportedly told police that the incident began as he, a female and two males were leaving Cloud bar on East Clayton Street when one of the two suspects kicked something at him, and after an exchange of words the suspect said to “follow us to the car.”

The report did not note to which suspect the Corvette belonged.

Athens-Clarke County police conducted a traffic stop of the suspects' vehicle near the U.S. Post Office on Olympic Drive.

Baker and Jarrett, the car's only only occupants,

were each charged with five counts of aggravated assault, two counts of weapon on school grounds, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, and reckless conduct.

Police did not indicate whether a motive for the shooting had been established.

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