Two mourners are dead and 2 are critically injured after a gunman opened fire at the funeral of a gang member who broke into the home of the gunman and assaulted his mother two weeks ago.
"Gunshots went off and people were just running and falling," one witness told Channel 11 News. "Next thing you know there was shooting and fighting. Everybody started running everywhere, hiding and ducking," said another witness.
The violence erupted Thursday at the funeral for 19-year-old Ryan Devon Guider (pictured above) at Victory for the World Baptist Church in Stone Mountain, just north of downtown Atlanta. Witnesses tell channel 11 news an argument broke out in the parking lot of the church as mourners were walking to their cars.
Police stopped a car fleeing the scene and arrested 3 occupants inside the car. It isn't known if the shooter is among the 3 suspects in custody.
Police say 28-year-old Marcus Ventress opened fire hitting four mourners. One victim died at the scene and another was pronounced dead at a hospital. 2 people are in critical condition and other mourners suffered non-threatening injuries as the result of falls.
Police believe Ventress is the same gunman who shot and killed Guider on May 26. Witnesses who know Ventress reported seeing him lurking at Guider's funeral. Police say Guider stole jewelry, cash and drugs from Ventress's home and punched Ventress' mother in the face during a May 26 break-in.
Ventress, who is considered armed and dangerous, is also wanted for shooting into an apartment, thinking that Guider lived there.
"(It's) all about us coming together as a community, finding a way to talk through our differences and not to revert to violence," said Rev. Kenneth Lee Samuel. "Too many guns and too many young people who do not know how to handle anger, this is what we're dealing with."
Police are still interviewing witnesses this morning.
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Photos: Channel 2 Action News