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Second Suspect Arrested in Mercer Student's Slaying
February 8, 2006

The following article was published Wednesday afternoon on the Web site of The Macon Telegraph.


SAVANNAH - Police arrested a second suspect today in the fatal Christmas Eve shooting of a 19-year-old debutante whose slaying touched off a public outcry to reduce crime in Georgia's oldest city.

Kevin Huckabee, 20, faces charges of murder, aggravated assault and intent to commit armed robbery in the slaying of Jennifer Ross. The Mercer University sophomore was shot hours after her debutante ball during a mugging near Orleans Square in Savannah's famous downtown historic district.

Ross, a Savannah native, died at a local hospital on New Year's Day.

Huckabee's arrest came a week after police charged another Savannah man, 25-year-old Michael Thorpe, in Ross' killing. Police said they expect to make more arrests in the case.

Huckabee was already in custody at the Chatham County jail after police charged him last month with possession of a stolen car, said spokesman Sgt. Mike Wilson, a Savannah-Chatham County police spokesman.

The stolen vehicle, a gray Ford Taurus, is the car police believe Ross' killers used to flee the shooting.

Ross had been celebrating into the wee hours of Christmas Eve after attending Savannah's Christmas Cotillion when three men mugged her and a group of friends. Ross was shot while one of the men tried to take her purse.

Ross was majoring in international business at Mercer with plans to establish her own international design firm.

She was a member of Chi Omega sorority, and she also played intramural volleyball and softball.

The killing sparked an outcry from some of Savannah's most prominent business leaders and friends of Ross' father, Rusty Ross, a senior vice president and attorney for Memorial Health University Medical Center.