Police Find Piece of Paper in Murder Victim’s Hand That Leads to Arrest

May 22, 2019 Updated: May 22, 2019

A man was arrested in connection to a murder in Tennessee after police found a piece of paper in the victim’s hand containing vital information that led authorities to the suspect, according to reports.

Bryant Ward, 24, has been accused of shooting dead 61-year-old Bryan Hervey early on May 15, reported Fox News. Authorities found Hervey’s body near his home on Linnean Cove at around 2:30 a.m.

According to court documents, prior to the shooting, Hervey was seen running to his front door. The surveillance camera in his doorbell captured him screaming for help while gunshots could be heard in the background, reported the news station.

After an investigation, authorities reportedly found 25 shell casings in and around the area the incident took place. They also discovered a piece of paper in Hervey’s hand that contained what appeared to be a license plate number: “BHN 561 dark,” reported WMC 5.

Authorities were able to match the apparent number plate to a dark car down the street from Hervey’s home. This was when Ward was arrested and charged with first-degree murder, according to the news station.

“SCSO is officially announcing that Bryant Ward, 24, has been arrested in connection with the Wednesday morning homicide investigation of Bryan Hervey. Ward was arrested today in Olive Branch and is being held in a Desoto County jail awaiting extradition back to Shelby County,” authorities said in a statement on May 17.

According to court documents, Hervey participated in the neighborhood watch program.

WMC 5 reported that Ward’s sister was in the car at the time of the incident. She told police that when the victim drove by he made eye contact with Ward. Her brother apparently became upset and then allegedly began firing shots.

Ward is expected to appear in court next on May 29.

According to crime statistics by the FBI, Tennessee had a crime rate of 651.5 incidents for every 100,000 people in 2017. This is much higher compared to the national rate of 394 per 100,000 people.

In the FBI’s 2018 preliminary crime statistics, murder and nonnegligent manslaughter offenses had fallen by 6.7 percent in the first half of 2018 in the United States.

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