Two men face felony murder charges after Georgia deputy dies from wounds

Two men face felony murder charges after Georgia deputy dies from wounds

Two men face felony murder charges in connection with the shooting of a Decatur County deputy who died Monday morning, according the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

The GBI said Sunday night the deputy, identified as Lt. Justin Bedwell, was shot in the midst of a pursuit Saturday that began in adjacent Seminole County. A deputy there tried to pull over a white pickup for reckless driving but the truck, with two men inside, didn’t stop.

The men fired a weapon at deputies pursuing them, the GBI said in a news release, adding the deputies returned fire. When the chase moved into Decatur County, deputies there joined the pursuit.

The suspects came to a stop in the driveway of a home where they “attempted to gain entry by shooting through the door” but left after the homeowner returned fire, according to the release.

One of the suspects then shot Bedwell as he arrived at the scene in his vehicle, the GBI said.

The suspects fled in their truck, which they wrecked “a short time later in a wooded area,” the release said. A Georgia State Patrol helicopter crew joined the manhunt following the crash.

One of the suspects, identified as Brad Phillips, 41, was taken into custody without further incident, the GBI said in the release.

The other suspect, Troy Arthur Phillips, was arrested later, the GBI said.

The men are accused of felony murder, aggravated assault of a peace officer, being party to the crime of murder, attempted home invasion, aggravated assault, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime.

CNN has not been able to determine whether either man has an attorney.

Gov. Brian Kemp remembered the fallen deputy in a tweet Monday afternoon.

“On behalf of all Georgians, the Kemp Family sends our heartfelt prayers to Lt. Bedwell’s family, loved ones, and fellow officers in light of this heartbreaking news,” Kemp wrote. “His heroic sacrifice and dedicated service will not be forgotten.”

Decatur and Seminole counties are in south Georgia, about 240 miles from Atlanta.

Correction: A previous version of this story misidentified where the pursuit began. It started in Seminole County, Georgia.

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