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UPDATE: Police say robbery possible motive in shooting death of Macon businessman

Macon police have not identified a person of interest or suspect in the late Wednesday murder of well-known Macon businessman Waldo Sheftall.

Macon Police Capt. Jimmy Barbee says robbery appears to be the motive in the crime. There is evidence of foul play, police said. An autopsy is currently under way, according to Bibb County Coroner Leon Jones.

Barbee said detectives are working on a backward timeline to determine Sheftall’s whereabouts up to the time of his murder. Sheftall’s family had not been in contact with him Wednesday afternoon or evening, Barbee said.

Sheftall, 54, was found shot dead shortly after 11:30 p.m. in his home at 955 Washington Ave. in downtown Macon.

He resided in the street level apartment at the home and rented out the basement apartment to Charles Higgs.

Sheftall had lived in that apartment for between one and three years, according to neighbors. He owned numerous properties in Macon including four rental apartment homes in the 1000 block of Washington Street.

Higgs contacted authorities Wednesday night after he was unable to enter his apartment because the front door’s top and bottom locks were locked, according to a police report.

Higgs said Sheftall typically only locked one of the two locks on the door, which leads to a hallway accessed by both apartments, according to the report.

Responding officers entered the residence Wednesday night through the home’s side door, which was unlocked. Sheftall was found lying on the floor with blood coming from his upper torso, according to the police report.

Friends and acquaintances today said Sheftall was the kind of man who would give the shirt off his back to anyone in need.

Sheftall, who was involved in various charities and civic organizations, would often be seen giving money to homeless people around downtown, Barbee said.

“I would say he was very successful, very gregarious, had lots of friends and knew a lot of people,” said mayoral candidate Robert Reichert.

Isaac Culver III, who owns Progressive Consulting Technologies located next door to Sheftall’s home on Washington Street, said the neighborhood is a quiet one, especially because of its close proximity to the Macon police detective bureau nearby on First Street.

Culver said he would be turning over to police tapes from the surveillance equipment at his business. But Barbee said surveillance cameras there were not positioned to capture activity at Sheftall’s residence.

Culver said some of his employees worked into the evening Wednesday but was not sure how late they remained at the building.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

Come back to macon.com later today for further details or read Friday's Telegraph.

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