Charges filed in Fort Valley killing on Labor Day

FORT VALLEY — Officials have charged a man in connection with the death of his friend after a shooting during a holiday party Monday evening.

Fort Valley police Capt. Lawrence Spurgeon said James Harris Jr., 55, of 210 Valley Drive, has been charged with murder in the death of Charlie Knolton Jr., 30, of Spruce Street.

Spurgeon said Harris was having a Labor Day gathering at his home Monday when partygoers said he and Knolton got into an altercation and Knolton was asked to leave the home. When he refused, Harris retrieved a handgun and the two began to scuffle. Officials believe that is when Knolton was shot.

Officers dispatched to the area on a shots-fired call at 7:30 p.m. were led to Knolton, lying shot beneath a carport at Harris’ home, Spurgeon said Knolton was taken to Peach Regional Medical Center with serious injuries. He was pronounced dead a short time later.

Harris is being held at the Peach County jail without bail.