Patterson shooting

Robert Evans

All three were PCHS students;One is facing charges of murder and another is still hospitalized

Law enforcement is investigating an apparent shooting Sunday night that left one teenager dead, one in the hospital and another in the Pierce County Jail.  

Robert James Evans, 17, of Patterson has been arrested and charged with murder in connection with the shootings.

Law enforcement officials have been tight-lipped about the incident with few details being released. Sheriff Ramsey Bennett and Patterson Police Chief Jason Strickland confirmed basic details of the incident Monday afternoon, but declined additional comment. Bennett said the fact the two victims are juveniles have required additional care be taken with the release of information.

Bennett and Strickland indicated a news release would be issued late Monday afternoon, but no details were released. Both men say they have been in contact with District Attorney George Barnhill for guidance in the case.

Bennett and Strickland said Evans was due to have his first appearance hearing before a judge Tuesday, at which time the warrants would be made public. The hearing had not been scheduled as of press time Tuesday.

The chief did confirm a male juvenile died as a result of the shooting and another male juvenile suffered a gunshot wound.

The body of the juvenile was taken to the Georgia State Crime Lab for an autopsy.

The Times has learned the deceased youth is Justin Lee Lynch, 16, of Blackshear. Arrangements are incomplete and will be with Pearson-Dial Funeral Home of Blackshear.

The wounded juvenile was transported by Pierce County EMS to Memorial Satilla Health in Waycross and later transferred to a Jacksonville hospital. The wounded juvenile reportedly underwent surgery Monday.

All three boys are reportedly students at Pierce County High School.

Bennett would not comment on a possible motive for the shooting, though he did tell The Times the incident was “not domestic” in nature.

The shootings occurred Sunday night in a rainstorm in the Tyre Bridge Road area of Patterson.

Initial reports indicate a passing motorist found a juvenile lying in, or near, Lucas Street near the park beside Macedonia Baptist Church shortly after 9 p.m. The man is said to have told the driver he had been shot. Additional investigation led to the discovery of a second victim who had been fatally shot. Evans was then taken into custody in connection with the shootings.

The sheriff’s office and the Patterson Police Department are investigating the incident.