ATLANTA - Police said they have made an arrest in the death of an Atlanta grandfather and have also matched the suspected murderer to a shots being fired at officers earlier in the night.
Melvin Cummings, 68, was found around 2 a.m. inside his home with severe head injuries. Detectives said during a press briefing Friday afternoon that Cummings was found strangled, beaten, and stabbed.
Police said his grandson called them after arriving at the house on Lakewood Avenue only to find it barricaded. Once Officers made entry, they found Cummings' body on the floor along with another man.
Police identified that man as 23-year-old Alphonso Cochran. Investigators said he was “playing dead” when officers arrived. He was later discovered to be very much alive and was taken into custody.
Cochran told police he was also behind an officer-involved shooting and stolen van incident that occurred hours earlier at nearby location.
Police said at the corner of Anne and Jonesboro Streets a man jumped out of the vehicle and started shooting at officers with an assault rifle. No one was hurt during the shooting. Police were able to recover the firearm.
Cummings' relatives told FOX 5 News their loved one was an electrician and the "glue that held the family together." That's why his nephew, Christopher Woodard, can't understand why anyone would want to take his uncle's life.
"He was my best friend. He would come over and hang out. We would break bread. He taught me so much. He is a big part of my daughters' lives. I got four girls and he was talking about taking them strawberry and apple picking. He was just a great man," Woodard said.