Motive unclear in murder of beloved Georgia State student

Weeks later, answers remain hard to come by in the killing of 21-year-old Georgia State University student Charles Rudison.

A preliminary hearing for the roommate accused of stabbing him was held Thursday in DeKalb County Magistrate Court, but the detective on the stand could offer no clear reason why the crime happened. Detective Krischan Payton could only give the same sequence of events that police previously released: the roommate killed Rudison on Aug. 27 during a dispute after the roommate ditched Rudison, a graduate of Gwinnett County's Mill Creek High, in downtown Atlanta.

But once Rudison walked in their Bouldercrest Road apartment, it took only moments for Breyana Davis, 22, to douse him with boiling water and stab him in the heart, the detective testified.

“I don’t know what the motive was for everything to erupt,” Payton said, adding that Davis was not physically provoked.

Payton didn’t know what – if anything – happened downtown to make Davis angry.

The detective's testimony centered on statements of witnesses and the suspect, who remains held in the county jail, charged with murder. Payton said there were two witnesses to the killing, a young woman who had been left downtown with Rudison, and a man who was at the apartment in the Ashford East Village complex.

Davis dialed 911 and said she’d just killed Rudison in an argument over a missed ride, police said. She said it was in self-defense.

“Of course that contradicts the two witnesses’ statements,” Payton said.

Rudison was working his way through college at a Dacula Publix distribution center.

He wanted to be a writer and had written for the school newspaper at Georgia Southern University, where he studied business. Even at 21, he was working with 100 Black Men of America, a mentoring organization, family said.

“This young man had a lot going for him,” aunt Jaunta Rudison said earlier this month.