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Music producer faces Henry County murder charge

By Jason A. Smith

jsmith@henryherald.com

A nationally known music producer, who makes his home in Henry County, is being held without bond in the Henry County Jail on a murder charge.

Demetrius Lee Stewart, 28, who is known in the entertainment industry as "Shawty Redd," is in jail in connection with the Jan. 1 shooting death of 35-year-old Damon A. Martin, of Detroit, Mich., said Henry County Police Capt. Jason Bolton.

Stewart appeared Saturday in Henry County Magistrate Court. A preliminary hearing in the case was reset for Jan. 12.

Police said Martin was at Stewart's home in the 2000 block of Ballymeade Lane in the gated Crystal Lake community, at 8 a.m., when an argument with Stewart erupted and Martin was killed.

When asked if Stewart turned himself in following the shooting, Bolton said, "He called 911 and was at the house upon our arrival."

"The investigation revealed that ... Stewart had shot an acquaintance inside the home following an argument that had turned physical," Bolton said. "The victim was shot once, and died from his injury." He said the gun which was used to shoot Martin was inside Stewart's home.

Bolton added that Martin, who had been living with Stewart since June of 2008, was not immediately identified by authorities because he had been using a false name prior to his death.

"Martin had in his possession a fake South Carolina ID, in the name of Kevin Sharpe," said Bolton. "He was wanted by federal marshals for failure to appear on weapons charges."

Donald Williams, an administrative employee with the U.S. Marshal's Office in Detroit, said Martin had been wanted by the agency since January 2009.

Bolton said police have "no indication that Stewart knew Martin's real name, or that he was wanted."

Stewart, a Grammy nominee, has worked with rap musicians including Young Jeezy and Snoop Dogg, according to The Associated Press. He has produced rap songs including Snoop Dogg's "Sexual Seduction," and Young Jeezy's "Trap or Die" and "Air Forces."

-- The Associated Press contributed to this article.