Alcohol possible factor in fatal shooting at College Park gathering

Police are investigating a deadly overnight shooting in south Fulton County.

Alcohol may have been a factor in the fatal shootout at a family gathering in College Park overnight that left one man dead, a second person struggling for life and a third recovering from a gunshot wound in the chest, police said.

The shootout followed an argument that broke out amid a gathering to remember a deceased relative, said College Park Police Maj. Lance Patterson. Robert Wright, 59, of College Park, shot the other two people before he was gunned down, Patterson said.

“I do believe alcohol played a part in it,” Patterson said. “I believe Mr. Wright and the gentleman he originally had the argument with had been doing some drinking. How much I do not know. We have to wait for toxicology reports to be returned to determine how much was in his system.”

College Park police said they were called to the South Hampton Estates apartment complex on Godby Road about 12:30 a.m. Sunday following a fight that erupted at a family get-together.

“The members of the family were there and having a simple gathering. And at some point, the gentleman who is deceased got into a verbal altercation,” Patterson said. “In his anger, he retreated back to his bedroom to retrieve a weapon. The one who was shot and not mortally wounded was shot in his chest area when he went to try to disarm him.”

“Hearing the gunshots and the commotion, family members went to the back of the apartment were Mr. Wright was. A struggle ensued where they were trying to disarm him. He was able to break away and began firing indiscriminately. He struck another member of the family in the head.”

Police questioned the relative who fatally shot Wright and then released him. It’s possible he fired to protect himself and others and won’t face any charges, Patterson said.

“We haven’t ruled out the potential for charges,” Patterson said, though he added: “It’s a very good possibility that he will not be charged.”

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