Thomas Jefferson Byrd, Famous For Acting In Spike Lee Films, Fatally Shot

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Actor Thomas Jefferson Byrd, famous for his role in a number of Spike Lee films, was fatally shot in Atlanta, Saturday. He was 70-years-old.

Spike Lee, Thomas Jefferson ByrdMireya Acierto / Getty Images

Police found Byrd unresponsive while responding to a call regarding an injured person at 1:45 AM on Belvedere Ave. Emergency medical services pronounced him dead on the scene. He had several gunshot wounds in his back

Byrd appeared in several of Lee’s films including ClockersGet on the BusBamboozledChi-RaqRed Hook SummerGirl 6, and Da Sweet Blood of Jesus. He also appeared in the Ray Charles biopic Ray and F. Gary Gray’s Set It Off. Lee honored Byrd with a lengthy post on Instagram, Sunday. 

“I’m so sad to announce the tragic murder of our beloved brother Thomas Jefferson Byrd last night in Atlanta, Georgia,” Lee wrote. “Tom is my guy. Here below you see him as the frightening character Errol Barnes in CLOCKERS. Brother Byrd also did his thang in my joints — CHI-RAQ, SWEET BLOOD OF JESUS, RED HOOK SUMMER, BAMBOOZLED, HE GOT GAME, GET ON THE BUS, GIRL 6 and CLOCKERS. May we all wish condolences and blessings to his family. Rest in peace brother Byrd.”

Homicide detectives are currently investigating the incident. 

[Via]