3 people of interest sought in hate-motivated shooting

DeKalb police have released surveillance photos of three people of interest in an alleged hate-motivated shooting and robbery of a gay Decatur man earlier this month.

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Ronald Trey Peters, 28, was gunned down along Orchard Circle near Decatur the morning of June 4, police said previously. His partner told investigators he was on his way to the MARTA station before work.

Witnesses said as Peters walked down the roadway, two men got out of a truck and put on masks, according to a DeKalb police report. They also said the gunman used an anti-gay slur as he ordered Peters to turn over his bag.

"The witness then stated one of the unidentified suspects shot the victim in the chest with a chrome pistol, then proceeded to shoot him again in the neck after he was on the ground and took his bag," the incident report said.

Bystanders told police the men who robbed and fatally shot Peters left in a maroon, four-door truck driven by a third person.

Investigators checked the box on the report indicating the crime was “hate motivated.” Georgia is one of four states that does not have a hate crimes law, which allows for steeper penalties against certain bias-related crimes.

Peters, who was from Pell City, Alabama, worked at Regional Medical Group in Decatur as a case manager.

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