12/31/13 — Two charged in shooting

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Two charged in shooting

By John Joyce
Published in News on December 31, 2013 1:46 PM

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Nebraska Raheem Best makes his first appearance in Wayne County District Court early today. Best is one of two men charged with the murder of Tony Jermaine Lewis. Jaquan Ahmad Dennis also faces murder charges in the case.

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Jaquan Dennis

The Goldsboro Police Department made two arrests Monday in Goldsboro's fifth homicide of the year.

Tony Jermaine Lewis, 42, 802 W. Grantham St., was gunned down in the 700 block of North Virginia Street just after noon Friday.

At 4:27 p.m. Monday, Goldsboro police officers arrested Jaquan Ahmad Dennis, 21, at his home at 409 W. Grantham St., without incident.

Just three hours later, at 7:20 p.m., Nebraska Raheem Best, 23, was picked up at a residence at 101 A. Ervin Drive.

"This is the result of a lot of manhours, a lot of great investigative work and a high level of cooperation between all the different units within the department, and really some great cooperation from the citizens of Goldsboro," said Maj. Al King, head of investigations for the police department.

Dennis, who has several larceny and drug charges pending in Wayne County Court, was charged with 10 counts of discharging a weapon into occupied property and six counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury in 2011. Those charges stemmed from a shooting in the 400 block of Murray Street May 22 of that year.

He was placed under a $1.7 million bond, but the charges were eventually dropped.

Best, also with several pending cases including drug charges and traffic violations, as well as convictions for burglary and breaking and entering, is associated with a history of violence.

Both men have also been shot in recent years.

GPD Criminal Investigations and Crime Scene Unit personnel responded to the scene of the Lewis murder Friday, processed the scene and canvassed the area.

"The number of people who came forward and cooperated fully was outstanding," King said.

Investigators were able to piece together bits of information and put the puzzle together, he said.

"A little bit of information led us to develop Dennis as a suspect in the early stages of the investigation, and then later a bit more information led us to the other guy, Nebraska Best," King said.

Goldsboro police Chief Jeff Stewart lauded the efforts of his officers.

"This was a combined effort, officers from the Patrol division, the housing unit and selective enforcement unit. They worked very hard throughout the holidays on this," Stewart said.

Earlier in the day, prior to the arrests made Monday afternoon, Stewart confirmed the status of each of his department's 2013 murder investigations.

At the time the Lewis investigation remained open.

Now three of the five murders recorded within city limits this year are closed.

* Shabazz Woods, 18, was the first homicide victim of the year, found shot and killed behind a Seymour Drive apartment Jan. 23.

* Tyree Simmons, 23, was shot and killed July 23 on West Walnut Street. The alleged shooter, Stevie Denardo Simmons, 41, was arrested at the scene.

* Alton Leevon Fields Jr., 35, died Oct. 15 after he was shot inside a home on Devereaux Street. James D'Angelo Raye, 27, and Lester Clinton Jr., 29 were both later charged with his murder.

* Gustin Garet Hinnant, 18, was found dead from a gunshot wound in his car in the 100 block of South Audubon Street Nov. 24.

The Woods and Hinnant murders remain unsolved.

Also unsolved is the Nov. 5 double-homicide discovered off Waller Road in Wayne County.

The Wayne County Sheriff's Office is still investigating the deaths of Tyrome Beamon Jr. and Shaundrea Milhouse, 21. A reward of up to $7,000 is offered for information leading to a conviction in the case.

The only other Wayne County homicide recorded this year, that of Richard Thomas on April 30 in the area of New Hope Road, was solved by the arrest of Benjamin Thomas.

Anyone with information regarding any of the open cases with the Goldsboro Police Department and Wayne County Sheriff's office is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 919-735-2255 or text tips to 919-222-4230.

Information leading to a felony arrest is eligible for a cash reward up to $1,000.