- Associated Press - Friday, December 23, 2016

HERNANDO, Miss. (AP) - A dispute over child custody apparently has led to DeSoto County’s first homicide of the year.

Lt. Chris Shaver of the DeSoto County Sheriff’s Department says “domestic ties” were identified between the victim, identified as Shareca Fair, and 54-year-old Bobby Adams, the suspect in Fair’s Monday shooting death.

The Commercial Appeal reports (https://memne.ws/2hzwMph ) family members told media outlets Adams was the father of Fair’s child and was fighting her over custody.

Adams is being held in the DeSoto County Jail without bond. He faces a charge of murder. It was unknown if he has an attorney who could speak on his behalf.

Police said Adams is accused of shooting Fair multiple times during a dispute at a home in the eastern part of the county.

DeSoto County, a suburb of Memphis, Tennessee, typically has few homicides per year.

DeSoto County Sheriff Bill Rasco said this week the county has had no more than two or three homicides in any recent year. Almost all are domestic situations, he said.

“I’d like to think the reason we’ve been able to hold it down is just because we’re out there doing our jobs,” Rasco said.

In contrast, Memphis and Shelby County has recorded a record 222 homicides so far in 2016.

While the homicide rate remains extremely low, the northern portion of DeSoto County closest to the Tennessee line has seen an uptick in other crimes. Increased commercial development in Southaven has brought added safety concerns and a bolstered police presence around retail areas. And in Olive Branch, a number of robberies and home invasions have been blamed on proximity to Memphis.

The county has also seen an increase in drug-related crimes - it has the unenviable ranking of No. 1 in Mississippi in heroin-related deaths with more than 20 this year. DeSoto County Coroner Jeff Pounders says the problem is worst in the northern half of the county, those areas closest to Memphis.

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Information from: The Commercial Appeal, https://www.commercialappeal.com


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