Union City Man Gunned Down While Trying to Escape Assailants

October 16, 2013

Atlanta– The third of five defendants indicted for the drug-related murder of a Union City man has been convicted and is now awaiting sentencing. Jurors returned guilty verdicts Monday against 28-year-old Taurean Thorpe on charges of, Felony Murder, Aggravated Assault, Conspiracy to Commit Aggravated Assault and Conspiracy to Sell Marijuana, Fleeing and Attempting to Elude  and weapons charges in connection with the death of 19-year-old Justin Evans.

Evans was shot and killed on June 21, 2010 outside of the Arcadia apartment complex in Union City. According to the investigation, the victim met the defendant and his accomplice earlier in the day to purchase drugs from the men. The deal turned sour when, as the defendant alleged, the victim robbed him and his friend of their drugs and got away. Defendant Thorpe and several accomplices later tracked down the victim at his apartment complex. Defendant Thorpe’s previously convicted co-defendant Gary Mosley approached the victim’s car as he was attempting to exit the complex and opened fire. The victim was struck in the ankle but continued to drive a short distance before crashing his vehicle into another car. He escaped the vehicle but was shot three more times by Defendant Thorpe. The victim died at the scene.  Defendant Thorpe and several other men fled the area in a vehicle and then led police on a high speed chase that ended in College Park. The men abandoned the vehicle and escaped into a wooded area. Fortunately, detectives discovered an important clue in the abandoned vehicle— a receipt imprinted with one of the suspect’s name and address.

Taurean Thorpe is scheduled to be sentenced on Friday, October 18, 2013 by Senior Judge Grant Brantley who presided over the case. In April, a Fulton County jury convicted Defendant Gary Mosley of murder in connection with this case. He was sentenced to life plus twenty years in prison. Paul Hill, another co-defendant, pled guilty last October to a conspiracy charge and was sentenced to ten years in prison. Trial is pending for two additional co-defendants.

Chief Senior District Attorney Pat Dutcher prosecuted the case with assistance from ADA Lauren Lnu and DA Investigator Bernadette Hernandez.  Detective Cliff McClure of the Union City Police Department led the initial investigation.

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