Police investigate homicide in north Columbia

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COLUMBIA - A Columbia man was shot and killed early Saturday morning on Rice Road and Ballenger Lane.

Police responded to a shots fired call around midnight. When officers arrived, Charles Hayes, Jr., 59, had a severe gunshot wound.

He died at the scene moments later.

An investigation is ongoing and police said they don’t have a description of the suspect. Officers, detectives, and forensic personnel left the scene around 4:30 a.m.

One neighbor across the street from the shooting said he didn’t hear anything.

“It didn’t wake me up last night, but I’m not surprised,” Rodney Johnson said. “This isn’t the first time something happened on that side of the neighborhood.”

Johnson lives on the east side of Ballenger Drive. He said on that side everyone is peaceful and friendly, but there’s often trouble on the west side of the road.

“You always have shootings and fights going on over there,” Johnson said.

Johnson has lived in the area for about ten years. He said shootings are normal, but someone dying is on another level.

“You just really pray for the families involved,” Johnson said. “People don’t deserve to go through sometime like that.”

Police said they will release more information once they complete their investigation.