Third Suspect Charged in Killing of Mercer Student


(Published Thursday, April 27 in The Macon Telegraph)

SAVANNAH – Police have arrested a third person in the fatal Christmas Eve shooting of a 19-year-old Mercer student in downtown Savannah.

Detectives arrested Webster Wilson III on Wednesday in the death of Jennifer Ross after a grand jury handed down an indictment, police said.

Wilson, 25, was charged with murder, two counts of aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, a police spokesman said.

Wilson was implicated as a person of interest at the same time Kevin Huckabee, 20, and Michael Thorpe, 25, were identified as suspects, Sgt. Mike Wilson said.

Thorpe was arrested in January and Huckabee in February.

At a preliminary hearing last month, Thorpe’s uncle, Sean Thorpe, testified that he set out with his nephew and two other men on Dec. 24 looking for someone to rob in the city’s historic district.

Sean Thorpe identified his nephew as the person who shot Ross after she resisted giving up her purse to muggers just hours after attending her debutante ball.

Ross, the daughter of a local hospital executive, died from her wound New Year’s Day. Her death prompted an outcry from some of Savannah’s most prominent business leaders for police to crack down on crime.

Rick Cameron is senior assistant vice president for marketing communications. He is liaison for the Athletic Department and is known as the "Voice of the Bears" for his radio play-by-play of football and men's basketball games, as well as select women's basketball and baseball games.