WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (WGHP) — A man has pleaded guilty and been sentenced for a 2017 Winston-Salem murder.
On May 30, 2017, Winston-Salem police came to the Sleep Inn on Hampton Inn Court after getting a 911 call.
At the scene, officers found Apaulenal Eric Areyano, 26, suffering from two gunshot wounds to the chest and abdomen. He died as a result of his injuries.
A man rented the motel room in question to Javarius Ford in exchange for the deposit money which would be returned after the room was vacated. Ford later called the man and told him “that he needed to come to the room because someone had tried to rob him and that he had gotten shot.”
Cell phone analysis revealed texts indicating that Areyano had planned to sell Ford cocaine. A search of the room found empty kilo wrappers with cocaine residue next to Areyano and on the dresser after the shooting. No firearms or money were found in the room.
Surveillance video from the hotel hallway corroborated who was in the room at the time of the shooting.
The video showed Ford entering the room at around 7 p.m. carrying a single backpack. Areyano entered the room exactly 20 minutes later, carrying a blue bag. After the pair spent around 15 minutes together in the room, three gunshots were heard and Ford left the room carrying his backpack and left the scene without seeking help for the victim.
The video also showed the man who rented the room to Ford enter for the first time at around 7:50 p.m. He left a few minutes later and waited until 8:07 p.m. to make the 911 call that officers initially responded to.
The man later admitted to stealing Areyano’s wallet and phone during that time and those items were later recovered at his home. He is not facing charges at this time.
Ford turned himself in to police two weeks later and his medical records revealed that he had recently suffered a gunshot wound.
On Thursday, Ford pleaded guilty to charges of second-degree murder, armed robbery and possession of a firearm by a felon in the Forsyth County Superior Court. The judge sentenced him to a minimum of 124 months and a maximum of 161 months in prison.