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Suspect caught in Indy shootings, Columbus gun theft


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A man suspected of going on an Indianapolis shooting spree before making a stop in Columbus to steal more firepower was arrested Wednesday in Boone County.

Balagoon Sankofa, 49, was being held Thursday at the Marion County jail on one count of murder, three counts of attempted murder, three counts of aggravated battery, two counts of arson and a sentence enhancement for using a firearm.

Police suspect Sankofa was involved in an arson and shot four people — leaving Khalfani, Shabazz, 51, dead —  between Aug. 31 through Sept. 1 in Indianapolis

At 3 p.m. on Sept. 3, the Columbus Police Department responded to a call from the Walmart at 2025 Merchants Mile, where a victim claimed he was robbed by a newly purchased, high-powered Mossberg rifle and a box of ammunition. Police believed the suspect to be Sankofa.

On Wednesday, Sankofa was found trespassing on a farmer's property near Jamestown, about 30 miles northwest of Indiana. The Boone County Sheriff's Office and Indianapolis Police Department responded to the scene and found the stolen Mossberg rifle in the car.

"He's locked up in Marion County and won't be going anywhere time soon," said Lt. Matt Myers, spokesperson for the CPD. "We're just very thankful that nobody was injured when he was taken into custody. It had the potential to get ugly real fast."

Sankofa, who also goes by the names of Harold Bishop, Zimbabwe Sancoffe and Larry Lane, got his will together, gave a friend a book of poetry and reached out to family members before the shootings happened, according to the probable cause affidavit, WISH-TV, The Republic's news gathering partner reported.

 

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