Man arrested in Alpharetta on 24-year-old murder charge

An Alpharetta man was in jail Friday after being arrested on murder charges filed 24 years ago in North Carolina.

Rodney Cooke has told authorities he won’t fight extradition to the Tar Heel State to face murder charges in the death of his former girlfriend Adrian Sauls, Channel 2 Action News reported.

U.S. Deputy marshals arrested him Tuesday after getting a tip that he was living in Alpharetta. Apparently he had not had an active murder warrant in the law-enforcement computer network for many years because of a snafu, Channel 2 reported.

“For whatever reason that warrant was never in the system, so for 24 years, the individual responsible has been on the run, has been living in society,” Alpharetta Officer George Gordon told Channel 2.

A friend of Sauls, who also was living in Alpharetta, told the news station that Sauls was a happy person. “She was a lovable person,” Chenita Pigford told Channel 2. “She was the type of person that if you was down, you can go around her and easily you’d get happy.”

North Carolina police say that Cooke was Sauls’ live-in boyfriend and that he shot her. They initially arrested the wrong man for the crime and later took out warrants for Cooke.

Gordon said police received a tip that Cooke was a wanted man and living in the city. Alpharetta police contacted the marshals, he said.

“It was realized that a mistake was made,” Gordon said on Channel 2.

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