Wilson Chavis, a 48-year-old funeral company owner, stands accused of committing murder at a child’s funeral service.
Maryland authorities reported that a heated confrontation escalated into violence, resulting in the death of Ronald Steven Banks, 30. A female attendee of the service was also grazed by a bullet, though her condition remains uncertain.
The tragic event unfolded at the burial service of Arianna Davis, a 10-year-old girl who was tragically gunned down on Mother’s Day in a still unsolved case. The funeral, orchestrated by Chavis’ company, took place in a Suitland, Maryland cemetery.
Police reports indicate that the confrontation began when Chavis disputed with two individuals connected to another funeral service provider. The nature of the disagreement, police say, is rooted in a longstanding business rivalry. This led to a heated exchange with Chavis, during which he allegedly fired his gun twice.
Following the incident, Chavis tried to flee the scene in his car. However, police arrested him during a traffic stop.
Banks died from his injuries in the hospital. Now, Chavis faces multiple charges in relation to Banks’ death. He has yet to be sentenced.
Antionette Belk, mother of Arianna Davis, shared that Banks was a close family friend who stepped in when Chavis became aggressive. She also pointed out that the injured woman was a cousin of Davis.
According to Belk, Chavis disrupted the funeral by saying that he had ownership of the body. He started acting disrespectfully towards the clergyman running the service, who happened to be Davis’ uncle. Belk said that the dispute between the funeral homes had no relevance to her family’s tragic loss.