Apr 11, 2016 - 7:34 PM
CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. -
The man charged with killing a Riverdale police major has died. His death comes two months to the day after investigators say he shot and killed Maj. Greg Barney.
Officers on the scene that day shot Ross, but not before he shot Barney.
“Other officers' lives were at risk,” said Clayton County Police Maj. Johnny Robinson. “The loss of life on either side, no matter what, is devastating.”
[READ: Community mourns loss of fallen Riverdale police major]
“I received the news from his mother that Jerand passed,” said family attorney Keith Martin. “It’s two months to the day and she has maintained steadily that Jerand would have to suffer the consequences for those actions."
Martin told Channel 2 investigative reporter Mark Winne that as the attorney for Ross' family, he and the family consider it a tragedy that two people died as a result of Ross' actions.
“They’re extremely sad,” Martin said.
He acknowledges Ross set his own death in motion when he pulled the trigger, ending the life of Barney, moments before a Clayton County police lieutenant shot him two months ago.
“Since he was shot, he's never been able to speak?” Winne asked Martin.
“That's correct,” Martin said.
Martin told Winne that Ross went to hospice around April 1, as his family anticipated he would probably not recover from his gunshot wound.
“We definitely don't want to lose anybody's life however. Maj. Barney, we think about him every day,” Robinson said.
Robinson told Winne he was the on-scene commander for the drug raid during which Ross shot Barney.
[READ: Mother of suspect knew fallen police major personally]
“(I) had just talked with Barney a few minutes before that. Every day, currently, I think about it and replay it in my head,” Robinson said.
Clayton County District Attorney Tracy Graham Lawson says the warrant against Ross for Barney's murder was pending at the time of his death but never served on Ross because of his medical condition.
She said the issue of whether anyone else will be charged in Barney's death is still under investigation.
Martin said Ross' mother, Felicia Lee, told him recently she prays for the Barney family every day, and for her own, for strength for both families
“Neither she nor anyone in her family is anything but saddened by any of these events,” Martin said.
Georgia Bureau of Investigation spokesman Scott Dutton also confirmed Ross died Monday morning.
Dutton said the state medical examiner will perform an autopsy on Ross at GBI headquarters. He says an autopsy is standard since the case is still active.
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