Crime

Columbus couple plead in fatal Cusseta Road shooting captured on surveillance video

A Columbus couple once accused of murder in a man’s fatal shooting on Cusseta Road during a 2015 dispute pleaded to reduced charges during court hearings a year apart.

Montrell Lamont Foxworth and Takisha Martina Lee were charged in the death of Descartes Reginald Baldwin, 34, who was mortally wounded June 19, 2015, by shots fired from a car at Cusseta Road and North Lumpkin Road.

Baldwin then ran to the parking lot of the Cusseta Package Store, 288 23rd Ave., where he collapsed about 11:15 p.m., police said. He was pronounced dead about 90 minutes later at the Midtown Medical Center, now called Piedmont Columbus Regional.

Investigators immediately suspected Foxworth and Lee because Lee had called them earlier that night to complain Baldwin hit her during a dispute at Lee’s 1990 Cusseta Road apartment, police said.

That call came in at 9:47 p.m., about 90 minutes before the shooting.

While officers were investigating Lee’s complaint, Foxworth drove up in a black two-door Chevrolet Cobalt. Noticing he had a gun, police checked to make sure he legally was permitted to carry the weapon, and he was, authorities said.

After Baldwin’s shooting, detectives checked surveillance video from the area, and found footage showing Baldwin walking on North Lumpkin Road toward the liquor store before a black, two-door Chevrolet Cobalt drove up to him, police said.

The video showed Baldwin had some exchange with the car’s occupants before apparent muzzle flashes came from the Chevy’s passenger side, investigators said.

Believing Foxworth and Lee were in the Cobalt when Baldwin was shot, police returned to Lee’s Cusseta Road apartment and arrested the suspects there, finding a Springfield 9-millimeter under Lee’s bed, authorities said.

Lee later told police that Foxworth fired the fatal shots through the Cobalt’s passenger-side window.

Besides murder, both Lee and Foxworth initially were charged also with using a firearm to commit a crime.

On May 14, Lee, who’s now 32, pleaded guilty to hindering the apprehension of a fugitive and to falsifying documents. Superior Court Judge Bobby Peters sentenced her to 10 years’ probation, with one year to serve in jail.

Exactly a year earlier, on May 14, 2018, Foxworth, who’s now 34, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and to using a firearm to commit a crime. He was sentenced to 25 years, with 15 to serve in prison and the rest on probation.

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