Roderick Leonard Burns and Tourious Samuel Morris

Roderick Leonard Burns (left) has been charged with murder in connection with the shooting death of Tourious Samuel Morris.

TALLADEGA -- A Talladega man was charged with murder early Thursday following a fatal shooting on Savory Street on Wednesday night.

According to Talladega County Metro Jail records, Roderick Leonard Burns, 38, was charged with murder and probation violation and was being held without bond Thursday afternoon.

According to Talladega County District Attorney Steve Giddens, Burns will likely have an initial court appearance sometime today before District Judge Jeb Fannin. Bond, if any, will be set by Fannin at that hearing.

The victim in the case has been identified as Tourious Samuel Morris, 38, of Talladega. According to Talladega County Coroner Shaddix Murphy, Morris was pronounced dead from an apparent gunshot wound at 11:45 p.m. Wednesday at the scene of the shooting. His body was sent to the state labs in Montgomery for an autopsy and other forensic testing.

Talladega police Chief Jason Busby said Thursday afternoon the incident leading to Burns’ arrest had taken place at a residence on the 300 block of Savory Street. The scene of the crime was listed on Burns’ booking information at the jail as being his residence. Busby said it was not immediately clear if that information was correct, or what the relationship between Burns and his victim might have been.

“We’re still trying to work through all those facts,” Busby said.

Busby also said Morris appeared to have died from a gunshot wound but declined to comment on how many times he might have been shot or where on his body he might have been hit. Investigators have recovered what they believe to the murder weapon, however.

“We’re waiting on them to conduct further interviews before we release any more information,” he said.

Both Busby and Giddens said Thursday the motive for and events leading up to the shooting remained unclear.

Giddens added he had been notified Wednesday night by Talladega police, and a murder warrant signed by Fannin had been issued Thursday morning.

Burns’ previous conviction stems from being pulled over by Talladega police on the 275 Bypass in May 2016 with cocaine, hydrocodone and MDMA, commonly known as Ecstasy, in the car with him. In September 2017, he pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful possession of a controlled substance and was sentenced to 24 months, suspended, 24 months probation by former Circuit Judge Julian King.

Giddens said Thursday the state board of Pardons and Paroles had been notified of Burns alleged violation.

Murder is a class A felony in Alabama, punishable upon conviction by 20 to 99 years or life in prison.

 

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