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Two shot and killed during custody exchange in Newton County
Suspect turns self in, held without bond in county detention center, TV station reports

This version of the story contains updated information from a previous version.

COVINGTON, Ga. — Two people were killed Sunday night and a suspect was being held at the county detention center today after a shooting during a custody exchange at a residence in west Newton.

The suspect, identified as Marquez Smith, 34, turned himself in to the sheriff’s office after initially being on the run following the incident on Pebble Lane, said spokesman Sgt. Jack Redlinger.

According to Redlinger, deputies at 6:15 p.m. responded to the home at 60 Pebble Lane in reference to a person shot. 

A man and woman earlier had arrived at the location in a vehicle to drop off the woman's 15-year-old daughter. However, the 15-year-old said she did not want to get out and go into the house with her father, identified as Smith.

The suspect then walked back into the house, retrieved a handgun, came back outside to the vehicle and shot both the man and woman, Redlinger said.

The two victims then attempted to drive away in the car but ultimately hit a mailbox — where deputies say they found them, the spokesman confirmed.

The man driving the car was pronounced dead on the scene. The woman died in the ambulance while being taken to the hospital, Redlinger said.

No information was given on the victims’ identity, nor information about if the girl was injured.

After the shooting, Smith left the scene driving a silver 2008 Ford F-250 pickup truck. Around midnight, he made contact with Sheriff Ezell Brown and made arrangements to turn himself in, Redlinger said.

He was charged with two counts of Murder, Aggravated Assault and Cruelty to Children and one count of Possession of a Firearm, according to sheriff’s office records. He was being held without bond.

Smith has a lengthy arrest history dating to 2005, jail records show.

This is a developing story. Watch for updates.

Marquez Smith
Marquez Smith (Special | Newton County Sheriff's Office)