Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Conviction in Party City Murder Case in Ridgeland

DA Michael Guest just released this Press Release

Conviction in Party City Murder Results in 45 year Sentence

Madison and Rankin Counties’ District Attorney Michael Guest announced today that Undra Ward was sentenced to serve 45 years for his involvement in the death of Robert Adams, the manager of the Party City in Ridgeland, who was gunned down in a robbery of the store in October 2012.
On October 26, 2012, officers were dispatched to a call of a robbery and shots being fired at Party City off of County Line Road in Ridgeland. Officers arrived and entered the back of the store they encountered the manager lying in the doorway at the rear of the business.  The manager was unresponsive and had suffered a gunshot wound to the chest.

Law enforcement spoke to two employees who were in the business at the time of the robbery.   The investigation revealed that after the store closed most the employees had left the business and that the three remaining employees were in the process of counting money and preparing a deposit.  There was then a knock at the rear door of the store and Mr. Adams opened the door and encountered the gunman, Joshua Archie.  A struggle ensued as Adams attempted to close the store door and during the struggle Archie fatally shot Robert Adams.  Archie then entered the store wearing a mask and gloves and at gunpoint ordered that all the money be placed into a book bag.  Archie then left and fled the scene in a white SUV.

The Ridgeland Police Department began scouring the area and after several days they were able to locate the vehicle used in the robbery at an apartment complex in Jackson.  Police learned that the vehicle had been stolen prior to the Party City robbery and was abandoned after the robbery.  The vehicle was secured and was taken to the Ridgeland Police Department were it was processed for evidence.

After the police ran video surveillance of the robbery on local media stations they received several tips as the identity of the gunman.  Those tips led them to develop a former employee Joshua Archie as the possible gunman.  As Archie became a suspect Ridgeland also determine that Archie had help from a current employee at Party City.  The investigation revealed that Ward was the person that worked with Archie to plan and carry out the robbery of Party City.

Ward was arrested and gave a statement to law enforcement concerning his role in the robbery of Party City.  He stated that he and Archie had planned for several days to commit the robbery and Archie had stolen a vehicle to use in the robbery.  Ward stated that on the night of the robbery he texted Archie when the store was closing.  Ward stated that he knew that Archie would be armed but that no one was supposed to get hurt.  Ward stated that Archie kept all the money taken in the robbery.

Based upon Ward’s cooperation, Archie was arrested and charged with capital murder in the death of Robert Adams.

Guest stated, “Without the dedication and determination of the men and women of the Ridgeland Police Department this case could have very easily gone unsolved.  The Ridgeland Police Department did an outstanding job of bringing to justice the two men responsible for the death of a hardworking and dedicated employee and family man who was killed in a senseless act of violence. ”

Guest added, “Ward’s cooperation and plea of guilty has greatly strengthened the capital murder case against the gunman Joshua Archie.  We hope that we will soon be able to bring Archie to trial for shooting and killing Robert Adams”.

District Attorney Michael Guest was sworn into office in January 2008 and represents the Twentieth Judicial District, Madison and Rankin Counties. For more information regarding the District Attorney’s office, please visit our website.

Name: Undra Delarence Ward
Address: 800 Williams Blvd., Ridgeland, MS
Date of Birth: September 16th, 1990

No comments: