Savannah, GA – A murder suspect was fatally shot by police early Tuesday, after the man pointed a BB pistol at officers when they came to arrest him.
Ricky Boyd, 20, was pronounced dead at a local hospital, the New York Post reported.
Savannah-Chatham County Police Department (SCCPD) Sergeant Sean Wilson was treated for gunshot wounds and was released from the hospital.
Boyd was the suspect in the Jan. 21 homicide of 24-year-old Balil Whitfield, who was found shot to death inside a vehicle, WTOC reported.
Police and federal marshals went to serve an arrest warrant at Boyd’s Savannah residence at approximately 6 a.m. Tuesday morning, and instructed everyone to exit the home, the New York Post reported.
But when Boyd stepped out, he was armed with what appeared to be a handgun. He refused to comply with officers’ directives, and raised the weapon.
Officers opened fire on the man, who was shot several times.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) handled the scene, and determined that Boyd had actually been in possession of a “BB air gun” that was powered by carbon dioxide.
“The officer did suffer gunshot wounds as well as other possible injuries,” GBI agent Bill Bodrey said.
Investigators are still working to determine whether Sgt. Wilson was hit by another officers’ gunfire, he explained.
SCCPD officials initially said that officers returned fire after Boyd shot at them. The GBI continues to investigate the incident.
“All I wanna know is why they came here and gunned my f*********g son down,” Boyd’s mother, Jameillah Smiley told WTOC. “They could have shot him in the leg. They could have tased him or something, but why shoot to kill?”
His grandmother, Mattie Smiley Wallace argued that Boyd didn’t kill Whitfield, WSAV reported.
“I want truth. Don’t lie about my grandson. I want truth,” Wallace said. “I don’t want no battle or none of that. I want to know who killed – who truly killed – that young man. Dig a little harder because it wasn’t my grandson.”
Wallace told WSAV that her family is still trying to understand how the situation between Boyd and the arresting officers escalated so quickly, although she and Smiley neglected to mention the lookalike handgun Boyd pointed at officers during the incident.
”Seeing him on the ground still shooting and shooting on him and at him while he’s on the ground. I’m steady telling them stop, stop he’s on the ground,” Wallace said. “My grandchildren telling them to stop–you think they stopped?”
“They killed him in front of his brothers and sisters, 10, 12, 14, and 17 years old. They killed my son in front of his family,” Smiley told WTOC. “Why shoot and kill my child? 20-years-old. Shoot and kill my child like he was a dog.”