Police charge 17-year-old with murder in connection to Railroad Park homicide

Walton with his mother and his sister. (Photo from Walton family)

Birmingham Police Department Chief A.C. Roper announced that they have arrested and charged a suspect wanted in connection to the March 17 fatal shooting at Railroad Park that took the life of 15-year-old Jarmaine Walton.

Justin Jones, 17, of Birmingham, has been charged with murder for the shooting death of Walton. A crime reduction team took him into custody at his place of employment in Homewood Tuesday at 5:15 p.m. and he is currently being held in the Birmingham City Jail on $200,000 bond. He will be transported to the Jefferson County Detention Center later tonight.

"Let me begin by giving my heartfelt thanks to the detectives that have worked this case so diligently from the on-set." Roper said following the announce of the arrest at a news conference at police headquarters. "They have turned over every rock searching for the truth."

Roper said he never had any doubt that an arrest would be made in the case, but he knew it would take time.

"At times, patience can be a virtue. And in this investigation, it required the patience of the family, our community members and our detectives." Roper said. "Due to the incident location, this investigation and this incident garnered more attention than usual, but rest assure we go after every homicide suspect with the same zeal and dedication of duty, and we would have it no other way."

Mayor William Bell followed Roper at the podium, saying the arrest should send a message to the community about committing crimes in the city.

"It should send a message, especially to young people:{} You cannot fire a gun, kill someone and expect to get away with it." Bell said. "Like the Chief said, it may take an hour, it may take a day, a month or a year, but sooner or later, you will be brought to justice. Use your brains young people. This cannot be a way of life."

Walton's family has released a statement regarding the arrest:

"We would like to send a warm thanks to Detective Jonathan Ross, the entire Birmingham Police Department, the community and the news media for helping to bring closure to the family of Jarmaine Walton.

"Although this is welcome news that Jarmaine's Killer has been brought to justice, it's still a sad day in Birmingham.{} Our family will never get Jarmaine back but another family will lose their loved one to the criminal justice system. We ask that you keep our family in your prayers and respect our privacy at this time."

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