A 48-year-old Stockbridge man charged with murdering his father during a heated altercation at the family-owned auto parts shop made his first court appearance Thursday morning.
John Wesley Morgan, Jr., told Henry County police he shot his 79-year-old father -- John Wesley Morgan, Sr. -- in self-defense. Police say the younger Morgan's claim doesn't add up. They say he shot his father several times.
Police also noted that Morgan Sr. was not armed at his family's auto parts business on Highway 138. They say a small handgun was found in his pick-up truck, but nowhere near his body. Morgan Jr., however, was heavily armed, police said.
Authorities said that an AK-47 was used in the shooting.
Morgan, Jr., is being held without bond at the Henry County Jail.
An autopsy is planned for Friday at the Georgia Bureau of Investigation's crime lab. It's expected to help Henry County police determine exactly how many times Morgan Sr. was shot and where.
Henry police say the father and son were arguing over some 4-wheelers Wednesday, when the dispute turned deadly.
"Upon arrival, officers discovered that there had been a domestic altercation at the scene here between a father and son. At some time during that altercation, his son picked up a gun and fired it at the victim, striking him multiple times," Major Jason Bolton of the Henry County Police Department.
David Gentry has worked for the Morgan family for more than 20 years, and he says he was inside the shop when the shots rang out.
"I just heard shots, that's all," Gentry said. "They're good people. I don't know what snapped him or whatever."
Henry County police said that the son was on scene and cooperative with them when they responded. He was interviewed by detectives late Wednesday.
This isn't the first time police have been called to Morgan Auto Parts for a fatal shooting. Back in 2006, the suspect's brother allegedly shot and killed a man trespassing on the property.