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Two Salisbury men killed in shootings named as suspects in 2016 Charlotte murder

Deceased suspects

Ferguson Claude Laurent Jr.

Anthony Gill

By Shavonne Walker
shavonne.walker@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — Two Salisbury men, one killed in a November 2016 officer-involved shooting, and the other killed in a 2017 double homicide, have been identified as suspects in a June 2016 Charlotte murder, authorities said.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police have identified Ferguson Laurent and Anthony Gill as suspects responsible for the murder of Adrian Allen Potts, 20, who was killed in the University City area on the morning of June 11, 2016. Authorities said there was a large gathering of individuals inside of an apartment on Collegiate Avenue when an altercation occurred that led to the shooting.

Information and evidence developed during the investigation recently led detectives to confirm Laurent and Gill as suspects. Charlotte detectives say they are not looking for any additional suspects in the case.

Ferguson Laurent was shot and killed Nov. 3, 2016, when Salisbury Police Department’s Special Response Team went to the 22-year-old’s home to serve a “no-knock” search warrant where an informant had reported buying drugs. When officers rushed in, Laurent shot at the them. An officer, Karl Boehm, returned fire, killing Laurent.

The shooting sparked turmoil and a lengthy SBI investigation. In June 2017, after receiving a report from the State Bureau of Investigation, District Attorney Brandy Cook cleared Officer Boehm of any wrongdoing in Laurent’s death.

Salisbury Police Chief Jerry Stokes said the death of Ferguson Laurent was tragic for his family, the officers involved, and the Salisbury community.

“The officers had some knowledge that Mr. Laurent was involved in activity in Salisbury and other communities that made undertaking the investigation that led to the warrant being served in November 2016 necessary to protect our citizens,” he said.

Stokes said while the Salisbury Police Department finds no solace in this information coming to greater light, “we hope the community understands the difficult job our officers face and the potential danger involved when dealing with those who may be involved in violent crime.”

The Salisbury Police Department implemented a number of safeguards to increasingly ensure officer and citizen safety during those times when they serve search warrants.

“The information released today by CMPD hasn’t changed our focus on community safety and commitment to combating violent gun crime,” Stokes said.

Anthony Gill, 22, was shot and killed July 29, 2017, along with his 23-year-old friend Da’Quan Robertson. The downtown shootings occurred early in the morning in the 100 block of West Fisher Street. Salisbury police have said an argument preceded the murders.

Two people, Jalen Cook and Zakelo Duren, were arrested nearly a month later with involvement in that homicide. Both Cook and Duren remain in the Rowan County Detention Center.

Contact reporter Shavonne Walker at 704-797-4253.

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