Woman Initially Charged in Shooting Has Been Released

By Richard Brenneman
Friday January 23, 2009 - 07:40:00 PM

While a Berkeley man has been charged with murder following Tuesday’s death of the victim of a Jan. 11 West Berkeley shooting, a 47-year-old woman originally charged with the shooting has been released. 

Berkeley Police Sgt. Mary Kusmiss said Thursday that the district attorney’s office decided there wasn’t enough evidence to charge Rhonda Reid in the death of Lee William Payton. 

Lee Freddie Green, 50, was already in custody at Santa Rita County Jail on a charge of attempted murder for the shooting, and the charges were raised to murder after 27-year-old William Payton died of his injuries in Highland Hospital. 

Police responded to 911 calls reporting a loud argument in the 1100 block of Parker Street shortly after 8 p.m. on the 11th. As officers were searching the area, they heard gunshots and soon found Payton bleeding from his injuries as he lay in the parking lot at the rear of the Bank of America at 2546 San Pablo Ave. 

Reid was arrested near the crime scene after a search by police from Berkeley and Richmond, assisted by officers from the California Highway Patrol. 

Green turned himself in the following morning after he learned that police were looking for him, Sgt. Kusmiss said. He remains in custody.