Arrest in security guard’s killing ‘can never replace the hurt,’ family says

Prayer vigil for Anthony Frazier will be held Friday evening

One day after police announced an arrest in the brazen killing of a security guard, the victim’s family will hold a prayer vigil Friday at the southwest Atlanta restaurant where he worked.

Anthony Frazier, 51, was gunned down Monday outside the American Wings and Seafood restaurant on Cleveland Avenue in what appeared to be an act of cold blood. After a foot chase Wednesday, Stanley Henderson, 30, was taken into custody on a murder charge, among other counts, police said during a news conference Thursday afternoon.

Credit: Fulton County Sheriff's Office

Credit: Fulton County Sheriff's Office

According to Atlanta police homicide commander Lt. Ralph Woolfolk, Henderson has a “12-cycle criminal history,” and police believe robbery was the motive in Frazier’s shooting. Woolfolk described the killing, which was captured on security video, as “barbaric.”

According to Woolfolk, Henderson was located at an urban encampment in the area Wednesday after police received a Crime Stoppers tip. Henderson fled from officers, which led to a chase and brief manhunt. An officer was injured during the chase but is expected to make a full recovery, officials said.

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

Speaking to Channel 2 Action News outside of American Wings and Seafood on Thursday, members of Frazier’s family said Henderson’s arrest was a relief but could not compare to the pain of losing a loved one.

“Well, I can say that God is a God of justice. I’m glad that he was captured, but that can never replace the hurt that we’re feeling right now,” Tommy Robinson, Frazier’s cousin, told Channel 2. Members of the family told the news station they planned to hold a prayer vigil for Frazier at the restaurant Friday evening.

Frazier was discovered dead when Atlanta police responded to the Cleveland Avenue restaurant just before 7 p.m. Monday. He had been shot in the back of the head.

ExploreOfficer injured while chasing suspect near where security guard was killed

Shocking video footage released by police shows a man, who police identified as Henderson, walking up behind Frazier with a gun as the security guard gets out of his SUV. Frazier appears to never notice the man.

After the shooting, the suspect can be seen in the video calmly grabbing something from Frazier’s body before walking through the back of the parking lot toward a wooded area.

Henderson is facing one count of felony murder and two counts of aggravated assault, Woolfolk said. According to police, Henderson’s criminal history includes charges of battery, obstruction, marijuana possession and aggravated assault.

A third man who witnessed the entire killing was also captured in the video footage. He can be seen sitting on the curb behind Frazier’s SUV just before the shooting, and the suspect walks in front of him seconds before killing Frazier. The man appears to gesture at the shooter as he walks away, but the suspect ignores him. The man, who police said they were working to locate for questioning, walks unsteadily away from the scene in the opposite direction of the suspect.

ExploreWATCH: Police release video of man accused of killing restaurant security guard

Later in the video, two men and a woman appear to stumble upon the scene. One of the men appears to take something from Frazier’s body before the group walks away. All three of those people are wanted for questioning, police said, and may face charges themselves.

“But being just shot in the head, no remorse, people looking at him, nobody warned him and for him to lay on the ground and then somebody else come up and searched him, that was a tough pill to swallow,” Angela Robinson, Frazier’s aunt, told Channel 2. “Oh that was hard. That was hard, just to see that.”

“They just stepped all over him,” Shawnte Frazier, the victim’s sister, told the news station.

According to Woolfolk, the investigation will remain open until the others seen on the video are located. Woolfolk said he expects some of the passers-by to face charges of tampering with a crime scene and theft by taking.

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

While the investigation will continue, the homicide case is considered “cleared” thanks to Henderson’s arrest, contributing to the Atlanta Police Department’s overall clearance rate. Deputy Chief Charles Hampton Jr., who opened Thursday’s news conference, said the APD reported a 72% clearance rate for homicide cases in 2021. Each year, the agency is required to share certain crime statistics with the FBI, he said.

So far this year, 35 of the city’s 56 homicide cases have been cleared, for a 62% clearance rate, according to Hampton.

He added that 40% of homicides in recent years have been the result of escalated disputes, which is in stark contrast to Frazier’s killing. Though Hampton made another plea for gun owners in Atlanta to avoid resorting to violence during moments of heightened emotion, Frazier’s slaying is notable for its cold-bloodedness and the chilling calmness of the suspect’s behavior.

Woolfolk said the video released by police Tuesday was crucial to the investigation. The homicide commander credited the tips received through Crime Stoppers for contributing to Wednesday’s arrest and the agency’s overall homicide clearance rate.

“It was a video in which we received multiple tips, and it just showed the vital nature of our Crime Stoppers program,” Woolfolk said. “That program has really been instrumental to our success, and we just received a slew of tips we were able to move on.”