Cordele Police officials investigate shootings

CORDELE, Ga. -- The Cordele Police Department is investigating a pair of shootings that took place within an hour of each other over the weekend.

On Saturday, at 9:35 p.m., Cordele police reported, officers responded to a call about a shooting in the area of 11th Street and 22nd Avenue. Officers discovered the first victim, Helen Hardeman, 65, with a gunshot wound to the leg.

Hardeman had been sitting on her porch with family and friends when she heard the gunshots and quickly realized she had been hit, a news release sent out by Cordele police officials on Monday said. Shortly after their arrival, officers were told that there was a second victim who had been transported to Crisp Regional Hospital via personal vehicle.

He was later identified as Markevious Johnson, 18, who had sustained gunshot wounds to the leg.

Witnesses provided information concerning the gunmen. Rondell Ashley, 18, and Kelsey Smith, 20, were being held in the Crisp County Law Enforcement Center on unrelated charges as of Monday morning.

Detectives are expected to file formal charges concerning these shootings.

At 10:26 p.m. Saturday, officers responded to the area of 11th Street and 21st Avenue in reference to gunshots. There, they discovered the first of the two victims being loaded into a car. He was identified as Christopher Grover, 19, and was transported to Crisp Regional by ambulance. He sustained a gunshot wound to the upper right chest.

The second victim in that incident, Kenneth Grover, 18, was transported to the hospital via personal vehicle after sustaining a gunshot wound to the wrist and thigh. A suspect has been identified and is currently being sought in relation to these shootings.

In both incidents, small caliber weapons were used and have not been recovered. The motive for the shootings is currently under investigation.

A phone message to an official with the Cordele Police Department seeking additional information and an update on the shootings was not returned Monday afternoon.

Anyone with information on these shootings are encouraged to contact the police department.