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Grand jury indicts three in June fatal beating

ALBANY, Ga. — The Dougherty County grand jury indicted three men Wednesday for beating an Albany man to death in June.

The jury also indicted a man dubbed by the media “the wigged bandit” on three counts of armed robbery, aggravated assault and possession of a firearm, said Chief Assistant District Attorney Heather Lanier.

Tracy L. Smith, 33, Demarcus Dontravious Lewis, 20, and Calvin Brooks, 29, were indicted for felony murder, aggravated assault and aggravated battery in the death of 45-year-old Jerome Walden, Lanier said.

The three will be arraigned in December, Lanier said. An arraignment allows the defendant to plead guilty or not guilty. Typically a public defender is appointed and a trial date set at arraignment.

“This was a new grand jury and we presented the cases,” Lanier said. “And we hope to go forward and seek justice in the cases.”

The murder case arose when Walden died in a hospice weeks after receiving a beating that put him in a coma. According to police reports, the three men attacked Walden with a board that had nails sticking out of it while he was in an alley near the 1200 block of West Highland Avenue.

Police arrived to find Walden unconscious, his eyes swollen and with abrasions on his chest and head. He also suffered a punctured lung, possible broken ribs and head trauma.

All three men remain in Dougherty County Jail, a jail spokeswoman said.

Tyrafred “Ray-Ray” Campbell, 19, the wigged bandit, also remains in jail, she added. The grand jury indicted Campbell on three counts of armed robbery, aggravated assault and other charges related to a July 11 robbery spree, Lanier said.

Campbell wore what police described as a grandmotherly looking wig while he robbed two convenience stores in Dougherty County, police said.

According to police reports Campbell pulled a handgun and within about seven minutes robbed the Pitt Stop at 3225 Sylvester Road and the Fast Lane store at 3000 Sylvester Road grabbing about $1,500. While leaving the second store, he fired at, but missed, a witness sitting in a car.

Campbell was a passenger in a vehicle on I-75 in Dooly County when he was caught, said Dougherty County Police Detective Chad Kirkpatrick.

Lee County Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Lewis Harris said his deputies want Campbell in connection with a robbery at a Homerun Foods store on U.S. Highway 19 July 9.