Tommy Robinson

Tommy Robinson played on the football and basketball teams at Paulding County High before his 2017 graduation.

Dallas Police today charged a 16-year-old with murder in the shooting death of a former Paulding County High School athlete and 2017 graduate.

The Paulding sheriff's office identified the suspect as Darnell Isaiah Priester, 16. He was charged as an adult on one count of murder, four counts of aggravated assault and one count of aggravated battery on warrants the Dallas Police Department took out, said Paulding sheriff's spokesman Sgt. Ashley Henson.

Officers from a number of agencies, including the Paulding County Sheriff's Office, Douglas County Sheriff's Office and U.S. Marshal's Service, arrested the teen at his mother's house on Brickelberry Way in Douglasville today about 12:30 p.m., Henson said.

The suspect was charged at the Paulding County Jail and transported to the Floyd County Youth Detention Center in Rome where he was being held without bond, Henson said.

Priester is suspected of firing the shot that killed Thomas "Tommy" Robinson, 18, outside a residence at 117 Ivy Brook Drive in south Dallas Friday night.

The incident was the culmination of a year-long dispute between two groups of teens who all attended or formerly attended Paulding County High, said Capt. Bill Gorman of the Dallas Police Department.

Gorman said the two groups, all Paulding residents ages 16 to 19, had an ongoing "feud" for about a year.

Robinson was with one of the groups Friday night who went to a residence, which is located in the Ivy Trace subdivision off Villa Rica Highway near the high school, Gorman said.

A girl in the group, which included Robinson and Timothy Nelson, went to the home because she said someone there owed her $20, Gorman said. At that point, someone inside the residence shot through a window, hitting Robinson in the chest and Nelson in the leg, the detective said.

Friends transported the victim to an area hospital rather than calling 911 because they did not know the extent of his injuries, Gorman said. However, they were unable to get him there in time to save his life, he said.

Nelson was treated at WellStar Paulding Hospital and released, Gorman said

Robinson was a 2017 Paulding County High graduate who played on the football and basketball teams.

Support Local Journalism

Now, more than ever, residents need trustworthy reporting—but good journalism isn’t free. Please support us by purchasing a digital subscription. Your subscription will allow you unlimited access to important local news stories. Our mission is to keep our community informed and we appreciate your support.


(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.