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Suspect in GSU grad's death surrenders | News

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Suspect in GSU grad's death surrenders
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ATLANTA -- The suspect in Sunday morning's fatal shooting of a former Georgia State University soccer star turned himself in to Atlanta Police Friday.

Emery Parrish, 30, arrived at police headquarters at around 1:45 p.m.

"For the record, I did not mean for this to happen. I told them I had a driver's license, I had insurance -- they attacked me," Parrish said as he entered headquarters. "I want to say sorry to the family. My heart goes out to the family. I just didn't mean for this to happen."

RELATED | Slain former GSU soccer player remembered

Parrish faces charges of murder, using a firearm in the commission of a crime and possession of a firearm by a felon. 

According to the Fulton County Sheriff's Department's website, Parrish has been arrested for numerous drug charges dating back to 2006. 

He is now accused of shooting and killing 23-year-old Ayokunle Lumpkin at a party on southeast Atlanta's Milton Avenue just before 2 a.m. on Sunday.

Parrish claims an oncoming truck ran his car off the road, forcing it into a parked car, through part of a fence and up into a yard where the party was going on.

Friends of the dead GSU graduate claimed he and other partiers tried to subdue the driver because he tried to flee the scene.

But Atlanta attorney Denis Scheib, who represents Parrish, said that his client told him a different story during a two-hour interview Tuesday.

"He did this in self-defense and he regrets it very much," Scheib told 11Alive in an exclusive interview Tuesday. "He told 'em at the very beginning, he said, 'I got a drivers license; I've got insurance; don't worry about it, it'll be taken care of."

Scheib said Parrish claims things got out of hand when several in the crowd began attacking him as he tried to get those papers from his car.

"He was afraid," Scheib said, quoting his client. "There're people that were yelling and screaming and he had people punching at him, slapping at him, knocked off his hat and they ripped his shirt."

Scheib said his client claimed one of his attackers then jumped him inside his car.

"A person got in on top of him and started pulling on him and grabbed him and he said there was a gun in the side of the console and he grabbed it and he said he fired one time," Scheib added.

That bullet pierced Ayokunle Lumpkin's heart, killing him.

Attorney Scheib said Parrish fled the shooting scene because he was still in fear of his life.

Scheib did most of the talking when his client surrendered Friday.

He said some of the party goers might even be guilty of a crime for attacking his client.

"He didn't deserve to be assaulted and he certainly didn't mean to shoot somebody; they attacked him; he had no choice but to act in self-defense," Scheib added.

"I think he's lying," Tulu Lumpkin told 11 Alive on Friday.

The shooting victim's older sister said, "I wasn't there, but I think he knows he was wrong."

"He stole his life; he took him away from us," she added.

Parrish's attorney said a new witness contacted him Friday saying the incident looked like self-defense to her.

He urged other party goers to come forward, especially any with videos of the incident, and tell the truth about what happened.

He also urged police to make sure and find out if Lumpkin's blood is inside Parrish's car, which would help support his self-defense claim.

Even if a jury were to decide Emery Parrish is not a murderer, he could still get some prison time for even having a gun since he has prior drug convictions.

Meanwhile, Ayokunle Lumpkin's sister told 11 Alive her brother's funeral is now set for next Wednesday at 11 am at Carmichael Funeral Home in Marietta.

There will also be a wake for him at the same location from 4 to 8 pm on Tuesday evening.

To help cover funeral costs the family has set up the Ayokunle Lumpkin Memorial Fund at any Bank of America branch.

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