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Police charge woman in mans death
1 suspect remains at large
0615Ashley Nicole Richardson
Ashley Nicole Richardson

Gainesville police say they have arrested a woman they believe is connected to last weekend’s death of 25-year-old Devin Anthony Thomas.

But they are releasing few other details, even withholding Thomas’ cause of death, stating a fear that the information may hinder their efforts.

Thomas was found behind a building in the 1000 block of Athens Street at around 6:45 Saturday morning.

He later died at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta.

Police, on Wednesday, charged 23-year-old Ashley Nicole Richardson of Gainesville with robbery and felony murder in connection with Thomas’ death.

Though the arrest seems to indicate that Thomas was killed in a robbery attempt, police did not elaborate on the charges filed against Richardson.

“(Investigators) don’t want to say anything to taint the case,” said Gainesville Police Cpl. Joe Britte.

Police have also issued a warrant for Jessie Joe LuJan, a man they believe is homeless and a frequent visitor of the south side of Gainesville.

LuJan, described as a 200-pound, 5-foot-7-inch tall Hispanic man with dark brown hair and brown eyes and a tattoo of the grim reaper on his left arm, is still at large.

A warrant for his arrest states he caused Thomas’ death “with malice aforethought.”

Police say they also have pending robbery charges against LuJan.

LuJan has a record of prior arrests for shoplifting in the county; records show his last arrest for the crime was six days before Thomas’ death.

Police said Thomas was a day laborer from South Carolina. They refused to release his believed cause of death, but a warrant for LuJan’s arrest alleges that he caused Thomas’ death “by striking the victim repeatedly with a blunt object.”

Police are still asking those who may have information about the case or LuJan’s whereabouts to call the Gainesville Police Department Criminal Investigations division at 770-534-5254, the tip line at 770-533-5873 or the Hall County Central Communications Center at 770-534-5251.

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