Murder warrant issued in killing of former GSU student

by: Richard Elliot Updated:

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ATLANTA —

Atlanta police now have a murder warrant for a convicted felon wanted in connection with the shooting death of a popular former Georgia State University soccer player, according to the felon's attorney.

Dennis Schieb said police plan to arrest 30-year-old Emery Parrish and charge him with the murder of 23-year-old Ayokunle Lumpkin during an altercation after a car accident early Sunday morning.

Atlanta police confirmed they knew of Parrish but had no other comment about the case.

According to Scheib, Parrish lost control of his car during a rainstorm on Milton Street in Southeast Atlanta, spun through the front yard of a house where some people were having a party and hit a Hummer parked in the driveway.

Witnesses said Parrish tried to drive away, and Lumpkin and others simply tried to stop him and hold him for police. During that altercation, they said, Parrish shot Lumpkin in the chest, according to police.

"They were just trying to do the right thing," said witness Tyler Claburn. "Things got out of hand, then there were gunshots."

But Scheib and Parrish tell a different story. They claim Parrish was trying to cooperate, but an intoxicated crowd became belligerent and attacked him.

"Someone grabbed me from behind," said Parrish in a written statement. "Someone pushed me. I tried to go around the car to get away. Someone hit me in the back of the head. I told them to stop hitting me and let me go."

Scheib said Parrish was able to climb back into the car, but claimed Lumpkin and others continued the fight, so Parrish pulled a pistol and tried to fire.

"He squeezed the trigger, and it didn't go off," said Scheib. "(Parrish) says this guy sees this and is still coming. He's hitting him, and there's a guy out there in back hitting him. And what he does is, he racks a round in the chamber and then he fires."

The shot hit Lumpkin in the chest. He later died at Grady.

Parrish drove away and later contacted Scheib. He did not initially contact police. Scheib confirmed his client has a past felony drug conviction. It is illegal in Georgia for convicted felons to possess firearms of any kind.

"He's very upset," said Scheib. "I've spent about seven hours with him in the last few days, and he's very upset. He said he didn't mean for this to happen. It shouldn't have happened."

Scheib said Parrish will surrender to Atlanta police detectives Friday.