Henry County

Arrest made in shooting death of HS basketball star

Dexter Covington,19

HENRY COUNTY, Ga. — Henry County police have arrested a person of interest in the death of Stockbridge High school senior Jesse Thomas, 17.

Thomas was shot and killed during his college acceptance party on May 13 at his cousin's home in McDonough.

Thomas was with his brother and a group of friends when a fight broke out.

Thomas' father, Jamal Sullivan, told Channel 2's Steve Gehlbach the shooter fired into a crowd of young people at the party and any one of them could have been killed.

"From what I heard it died down and escalated back up really quick,” Sullivan said. “No one knows what happened. Punches were thrown and the guy fired … He was just shot.”

Thomas was taken to Henry-Piedmont Hospital, where he later died.

The basketball star was set to graduate this month and planned to walk on to the team at Indian River State College in Florida.


After interviewing more than 50 witnesses, police say they were able to piece together what took place and found leads that led to the arrest of Dexter Deshawn Covington, 19.

Covington turned himself in on Friday and is now charged with murder, aggravated assault, nine counts of reckless conduct and criminal trespassing.

Police say the investigation is still open.