Suspect in Fayette County Church Shooting Identified

Fayette County Sheriff Vernon Stanforth has released the name of the suspect from the shooting reported on November 28th at the Center Christian Church parking lot on Garringer-Edgefield Rd. in northwest Fayette County.  

A warrant has been issued for the arrest of Brandon Joshua Taylor, 27, of Columbus. Taylor is described as a black male, 6'01", 230 lbs, with black hair and brown eyes. He is wanted on charges of Felonious Assault and Aggravated Robbery and is believed to located in Columbus.

On the evening of the incident, a witness in the area reported observing two vehicles on the church parking lot and at least two subjects outside the vehicles involved in a physical altercation.  Shortly thereafter, the witness reported hearing what was believed to be the discharge of a firearm.  Upon the arrival of Deputy Jordan Lovely, he located only one vehicle on the parking lot with an incoherent male, later identified as Lee E. Watkins, 25, of Butler County, inside the vehicle suffering from a gunshot wound. Deputy Lovely requested response from EMS and a medical helicopter while administering first aid to Watkins pending the arrival of medical personnel.  The shooting suspect had left the area before Deputy Lovely arrived.

Anyone with information concerning Taylor’s whereabouts are encouraged to contact the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office at (740)335-6170 or by contacting Det. Sgt. Jon Fausnaugh at (740)333-3504 Ext. 7

Anonymous tips may also be reported by visiting our website at and clicking the “Report a Tip” link. 

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