Another LaGrange man charged in Greenville mass shooting

By Melanie Ruberti

mruberti@civitasmedia.com

Tommie Thornton, 22, of LaGrange, is placed into a Meriwether County sheriff’s car after he was arrested Oct. 12 on suspicion of participating in a shooting that injured 10 people in Meriwether County. A second suspect, Demarcus LaQuan Norman, 20, of LaGrange, was arrested and charged in the case Wednesday.
Tommie Thornton, 22, of LaGrange, is placed into a Meriwether County sheriff’s car after he was arrested Oct. 12 on suspicion of participating in a shooting that injured 10 people in Meriwether County. A second suspect, Demarcus LaQuan Norman, 20, of LaGrange, was arrested and charged in the case Wednesday. Submitted

GREENVILLE — Investigators with the Meriwether County Sheriff’s Office announced late Sunday that they arrested a second suspect in the Sept. 27 mass shooting at a former nightclub.

Demarcus LaQuan Norman, 20, of Northwood Drive in LaGrange, was captured by the U.S. Marshal’s Service on Wednesday at his home, stated investigators.

Officials said a handgun also was found near where Norman was arrested. The weapon was sent off to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Crime Lab to compare it to the evidence found at the crime scene, Meriwether County investigators explained.

Norman was charged with 10 counts of aggravated assault and one count of possession of a firearm. He remained in Meriwether County Jail this morning.

Norman and Tommie Thornton, 22, of Sanford Avenue in LaGrange, are accused of shooting 10 people inside the Hill Haven Event Center, formerly known as Club CJ’s, at 1140 Hill Haven Road just before 3 a.m. Sept. 27. All the victims were treated for various wounds, the sheriff’s office said at the time, but none were life-threatening and no one was killed in the shooting.

Meriwether County sheriff’s investigators arrested Thornton at a home on Habersham Drive in LaGrange on Oct.12. Sheriff Chuck Smith said the suspect was taken to the Meriwether County Jail and charged with nine counts of aggravated assault and possession of a firearm. He was being held without bond.

Smith said his investigators suspected Norman early in the investigation.

“Prior to our arrest of Thornton, our investigators had gained evidence into the identity of a second shooter that was involved in this incident,” he explained. “We continued to track down the leads related to this second shooter and were able to gather enough evidence to obtain arrest warrants for this second suspect. Upon obtaining these warrants for this suspect we had information that he would possibly try to abscond the area. We made contact with the United States Marshal’s Service to assist us in the apprehension of this subject after local attempts at apprehension had met with negative results.”

Investigators are following additional leads that may lead to more arrests and charges in this case, he added.

Melanie Ruberti is a reporter at LaGrange Daily News. She may be reached at 706-884-7311, ext. 2156.