Fayetteville Police Department officers arrested a man suspected of murder this morning, according to a Fayetteville Police press release.
Officers arrested Christopher Rankin on charges of first degree murder of Trenton Coney just before 1 a.m.
Witnesses reported that Rankin was speaking to a female in the parking lot of Arsaga’s at the Depot, when Coney approached them to check on the female, according to the press release.
Rankin pointed a handgun at Coney but put it away after the two talked. A physical altercation followed, and Rankin stood over Coney and shot him once in the chest after Coney fell to the ground, according to the press release.
A patrol officer arrived and administered first aid, but Coney died from his injuries at Washington Regional Medical Center at 1:40 a.m., according to the press release.
Rankin fled the scene before officers arrived but was arrested shortly afterward without incident, according to the press release.
Rankin admitted his involvement in the shooting in an interview, but he claimed he fired behind him as he fled and did not know anyone was injured, according to a preliminary report from Matt Durrett, Fourth District Prosecutor.
Rankin’s statement does not match witnesses’ testimony or the evidence observed in the investigation, according to the preliminary report.
The incident is under investigation.