Former Jonesboro cop charged with vehicular homicide, accused of fleeing fatal crash

A former Jonesboro police officer faces vehicular homicide charges this evening after turning himself in following a deadly accident on the Downtown Connector. 

The family of the young man who was killed is just devastated.   

They say the former officer made things worse when he left the scene. 

Abari Meade was just 27 years old. 

His family tells me he was a caring and compassionate person who always looked out for others and did not deserve what he got.  

"Since it was so unexpected, it's really taking a toll on all of us," the victim's uncle, Desmond Meade, said. 

Atlanta police report that on May 27 at around 1 p.m., Abari was involved in a fender bender. An arrest warrant states he was actually waiting on an officer to address the accident when former Jonesboro Police Officer Godreque Newsom Sr., who was traveling northbound, struck Abari's car. 

Medics rushed the 27-year-old Virgin Island native to Grady Memorial Hospital, but he did not survive his injuries.  

The family says they are really upset that a lifelong police officer would be involved in a hit and run. 

"For him, as a police officer, to do that, to leave the scene of the crime, and left my nephew on the side of the road to die. That's what makes this so disturbing in itself," the uncle continued.  

A magistrate judge denied bond for Newsom on Thursday. Meade, who was living in Atlanta with his mother and two siblings, will be buried in his homeland of the Virgin Islands where his father resides. 

"It's taking a toll on his mom and siblings. I talked to his father who is my brother today. He couldn't even speak. All he did on the phone was cry the entire time," Mr. Meade commented.  

According to court documents, he had hired well-known defense attorney Bruce Harvey as his attorney.