DeKalb man arrested on charges related to deadly shooting, crash in Gwinnett

Credit: Gwinnett County Sheriff's Office

Credit: Gwinnett County Sheriff's Office

A DeKalb County man has been arrested weeks after a deadly shooting that caused the victim to crash his car into the front yard of a Gwinnett County home.

Michael Charles Jackson, 63, of Lithonia, is facing six criminal counts, including murder, in the January shooting death of 46-year-old Don Wardlaw, according to Gwinnett police. Jackson was booked into the Gwinnett jail Thursday, less than 24 hours after police said they had obtained warrants for his arrest.

ExploreDriver crashes in yard of Gwinnett home after fatal shooting

He is being held on one count each of malice murder, murder, aggravated assault, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime and discharging a firearm within 50 yards of a road, online jail records show.

Police said warrants had been obtained for Jackson on Wednesday, more than a month after Wardlaw’s death.

Wardlaw was fatally wounded while driving in the early morning hours of Jan. 27, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution previously reported. After being shot, Wardlaw crashed his car into a tree in the front yard of a home on Rockbridge Road. He was still alive when a resident of the home, Dennis Marez, came outside to check on the situation.

Before he died, Wardlaw said a few words that Marez said he could not understand. Wardlaw was pronounced dead at the scene by emergency medical personnel.

At the time, investigators could not determine where Wardlaw had been shot. No gunshots had been reported in the area, police said.

Police did not say how they connected Jackson to the incident or what evidence allowed them to obtain warrants for his arrest. He was arrested at his home with the help of Gwinnett sheriff’s deputies, and he remains in jail without bond.

Credit: Family Photo

Credit: Family Photo

According to a GoFundMe page set up by Wardlaw’s sister-in-law, he is survived by two children. The fundraiser was created to help pay for Wardlaw’s memorial service and future counseling and education for his kids. Since its inception Jan. 31, it has raised more than $14,000.