published Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

Adrian Ladon Gustus arrested in slaying of state representative's father-in-law

A man charged in the robbery and slaying of a Red Bank businessman and state representative's father-in-law was arrested Tuesday in South Carolina.

Adrian Ladon Gustus, 38, is accused of robbing and shooting Winston Gant -- the father-in-law of Tennessee state Rep. Gerald McCormick, R-Chattanooga -- outside of Gant's home and towing business on July 28.

Gustus was arrested in Rock Hill, S.C., and is being held pending extradition to Hamilton County, according to Red Bank Police Chief Tim Christol. Gustus faces charges of felony murder, especially aggravated robbery and aggravated robbery, Christol said, and no bond will be set for the felony murder charge.

The district attorney's office is working to get Gustus extradited as quickly as possible, Christol said.

"This [arrest] helps to move the process along for gaining closure for the family and the community," he said. "[Gant] was a businessman and was important to the community. This will help gain closure."

Another man also has been charged in Gant's death. Segmund Jermaine Boyd, 39, turned himself into Red Bank police on Aug. 9 and faces the same charges as Gustus. Boyd is set to appear in the Red Bank Municipal Court on Sept. 24.

Gant and Crystal Williams -- who is Boyd's estranged wife -- were approached by two men who demanded money while standing outside Gant's Towing about 1 a.m. on July 28, according to police reports. After a struggle, Gant was shot in the left leg and the men took Gant and Williams' money as well as the contents of Williams' purse, Christol said.

Investigators have said Williams is not a suspect in the crime.

Gant was transported to Erlanger, where he died three days later from his injuries, according to a Hamilton County medical examiner's report.

Gustus has prior convictions and pending criminal charges in Hamilton County that include aggravated robbery, aggravated assault, narcotics violations, felony possession of a weapon with prior crimes of violence, attempted second-degree murder and third-offense DUI, according to a news release from Christol.

Contact staff writer Rachel Bunn at rbunn@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6592.

about Rachel Bunn...

Rachel Bunn is originally from Ellijay, Ga., and graduated from the University of Georgia with degrees in magazines and history. While at UGA, she wrote for the student magazine UGAzine, served as news editor for the student newspaper, The Red & Black, and spent a semester studying British history at Oxford University in Oxford, England. She has previously worked at The Rockdale Citizen in Conyers, Ga., and The Reporters Committee for the Freedom of the ...

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