Police: Dalton woman charged with murder was with shooter

Jan. 17—Dalton Police Department investigators determined a Dalton woman was with a Cohutta man during the shooting of a 62-year-old Dalton man last year and afterward, and in consultation with the District Attorney's Office investigators last week obtained warrants for her arrest on the same charges as the Cohutta man: two counts of murder (non-family, gun) and one count of aggravated assault (gun).

Kyera Deshae Betton, 21, was arrested without incident on Friday at the Dalton Police Services Center, police said. She remained in the Whitfield County jail on Tuesday without bond according to the sheriff's office's website.

Police were called to the apartment of Kenneth Ray Townsend, 62, at 801 Selvidge St. at 2:51 a.m. on March 31, 2022, for a report that a man had been shot. When officers arrived they found Townsend with gunshot wounds to his arm and chest. He was taken by ambulance to Hamilton Medical Center where he died shortly after. Initial information provided to investigators indicated the shooter was a Black male wearing a black hooded sweatshirt. The suspect fled before officers arrived.

Gabriel Mekel Adams, then 19, of 1247 Derby Drive, Cohutta, was charged with two counts of murder (non-family, gun) and aggravated assault (gun) by the Whitfield County Sheriff's Office for the shooting. He was arrested in April 2022 in Chattanooga with the help of the U.S. Marshals Service. He waived extradition from Tennessee. He remained in the county jail on Tuesday without bond according to the sheriff's office's website. His next court date is Feb. 15.

"Murder can be committed in two ways," District Attorney Bert Poston said in April of last year. "With 'malice aforethought,' which means an actual intent to kill without justification, or without malice, but where the defendant is committing an intentional violent felony, like aggravated assault, which then results in a death. Adams is charged both ways."

Investigators followed multiple leads and developed information Adams was the shooter. Investigators obtained warrants for his arrest. As the investigation continued, they obtained information indicating he was in Chattanooga.

Dalton Police Department investigators accompanied agents from the U.S. Marshals Service and officers from the Chattanooga Police Department to 1611 N. Orchard Knob Ave. in Chattanooga. Adams was taken into custody without incident.