Latta PD: Homicide victim identified shooter

Source: Florence County Booking
Source: Florence County Booking

LATTA, SC (WMBF) The suspect investigators say shot and killed a Latta man inside his home, is being charged with murder. Officials say 38 year-old Willie Morrison could also face additional charges. He's now at the Dillon County Detention Center.

Morrison was arrested after investigators say he was identified by the victim.

Investigators say, after he was shot, the victim 56 year-old Jesse Barr, was able to walk from his home to a neighbors, and that's when he called police.

"He had reported that the alleged suspect had kicked in his door and gave the name of the man who shot him," said Latta Police Chief Crystal Moore.

Investigators say around 3:30 Tuesday morning Morrison shot Barr twice, but Morrison didn't walk away unharmed.

Only moments after Latta police responded to a home along Antonio Street, they got a call from Florence police - letting them know Morrison was at a Florence hospital seeking treatment for a gunshot wound to his hand.

"Officers recovered a gun on scene in Florence along with some drugs, while out here in Latta the officers recovered shell casings," said Moore.

About 45 minutes into the investigation, Barr died at an area hospital.

His family members say the news was unexpected.

"When you get that call at 3 in the morning it was shock and disbelief," said Gerri Barr, Barr's sister in Law.

Gerri Barr says he grew up in his home on Antonio Street home and kept to himself.

She says Barr was a great father to his children.

"He has a son who's 13 and he loves him and he also has an older daughter... and anytime his son wanted something worked on like his bike fixed or tinkered with, he would always bring it to Jesse," said Gerri.

Investigators swept Barr's home for hours, trying to find out exactly what happened Tuesday morning between Barr and Morrison.

"The evidence should help out with everything we got with the blood splatter, the bullets, the [bullet] holes [in the building], we should be able to get a lot of evidence that will answer a lot of questions," said Moore.

Barr's family members say incidents like this are becoming all too common in the area and say this could have happened to anyone.

"It's horrible that someone would come to your house and break in and take your life, but we've seen it quite a few times very recently," said Gerri.

Investigators are still working on this case, but Morrison is being held at the Dillon County Detention Center.

Morrison was transported to the Dillon County Detention Center from the jail in Effingham. Moore said Morrison is charged with murder, but could face additional charges.

SLED, Florence City PD and Dillon County Sheriff's Office are assisting Latta PD in this investigation.

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