Police: Murder suspect in Opelika shooting on Edmon Avenue faces more charges

Sarah Robinson

Ladarius Deion Payne
Ladarius Deion Payne

A man accused in the Feb. 4  shooting death of Jalen Johnson in the 600 block of Edmon Avenue faces more charges, Opelika , Ala., police said today.

Ladarius Deion Payne, 22,  now faces two counts of attempted murder and two counts of robbery first degree. 

Based on limited information in the investigation, police said Payne and Johnson were involved in a drug deal with two other men inside the apartment building at 601 Edmon Ave. when both pulled handguns in an attempt to rob the other two men.

  Gunfire spilled outside into the front yard of the building.

  Johnson died of multiple gunshot wounds. One of the other men sustained a gunshot wound before he was driven by car to the hospital. He is expected to recover after undergoing surgery.

  The Lee County District Attorney's Office has been consulted to determine if additional charges will be filed.  The case will be presented to a grand jury.

Original Story

A 22-year-old man was charged in Thursday's afternoon fatal Opelika shooting in the 600 block of Edmon Avenue, according to a press release.

Ladarius Deion Payne, the suspect, was arrested on a murder warrant at 1:32 p.m. Monday at the corner of South Fourth Street and Columbus Parkway. He is expected to face additional charges related to the death of 19 year-old Jalen Cavon Johnson, Opelika Police said.

Police Capt. Shane Healey said received calls of several gunshot being fired in the area of 600 Edmon Avenue and arrived on the scene minutes later to find Johnson lying in the street with multiple gunshots.

Paramedics gave the victim medical attention, but he showed no signs of life and was pronounced dead on the scene at 3:02 p.m., Healey stated in the release. Officials said Johnson's body was transported to the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences for an autopsy.

Minutes after the reported shooting a 24 year-old man believed to be injured "during the same altercation" was dropped off at East Alabama Medical Center’s Emergency Room with several gunshot wounds.

Police said further details are limited as they continue to investigate the events that led up to the shooting.

Anyone with any information concerning the case is asked to contact the Opelika Police Department Investigative Services Division at 334-705-5220 or the Secret Witness Hotline at 334-745-8665.

— Sarah is a crime & safety reporter at The Ledger-Enquirer. You can contact her on Twitter at @SarahR_92.