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Police say a man charged in a deadly Iowa City shooting catfished the victim prior his death

Published: May. 16, 2021 at 2:00 PM CDT
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IOWA CITY, Iowa (KCRG) - Police say the man charged in the deadly shooting of an Iowa City man in April had led the victim to believe he was texting and messaging with a female in the months prior to his death.

On Sunday, Iowa City Police announced that Renard Winfield Jr., 29, of Gary, Indiana, had been arrested and charged with 1st Degree Murder for the shooting death of Tommy Curry, 31, of Iowa City.

At 8:04 P.M. on April 28th, Iowa City Police officers responded to a shots-fired call near the Meadow Lark Apartment Complex (located at 2400 Lakeside Drive). When police arrived, they found Curry in his vehicle in the apartment complex’s parking lot with gunshot wounds. Curry had been shot multiple times, was transported to University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, and was later pronounced dead.

But according to a criminal complaint, investigators learned that Curry had been texting with an unknown number prior to his death, dating back to January 23, 2021.

Investigators later learned that Curry got the number through a dating website and believed that the owner of that dating website account was a female.

On April 28th, police say Curry agreed to meet with the person he was texting at the Meadow Lark Apartments.

According to the complaint, a witness saw a man approach Curry’s vehicle that night and start shooting. The witness also saw a white SUV flea the scene.

Investigators say they located surveillance video from multiple sources showing a white Dodge fleeing the scene of Curry’s murder. Police also say location data obtained from the cellphone carrier of Winfield’s last know phone showed that Winfield was in the area of the murder.

The criminal complaint also states that surveillance video from multiple sources shows a white Dodge Journey fleeing the scene of the murder. Surveillance video also shows a white 2018 Dodge Journey, which is registered to a relative of Winfield, in Iowa City on April 27th and April 28th, with Winfield driving the vehicle on those dates, according to investigators.

Authorities say that, when investigators seized Winfield’s cell phone, they found screenshots of Curry’s dating profile, as well as video of Winfield in possession of a handgun, which is believed to be the same caliber as the murder weapon used.

Police say Winfield was in possession of that handgun the day before the murder, and that video also shows Winfield in possession of ammunition which was located at the crime scene and Winfield buying the same ammunition days before the murder.

When interviewed by investigators, police say Winfield said he had not been in Iowa City since the end of March 2021 and that the white 2018 Dodge Journey had not been in Iowa City, either.

Winfield has also been charged with 1st Degree Harassment.

On July 29, 2020, authorities say Winfield called a woman from a blocked number, “requested information about another male” in reference to a case Winfield “is involved in” and told the woman that if she didn’t provide information that he would “pull up” on her and her family, according to the criminal complaint. It is not clear at this time if this incident is related to Curry’s death.

As of Sunday evening, Winfield is in custody at Johnson County Jail.

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A man from Gary, Indiana has been charged for a deadly shooting in Iowa City that happened in April.

Authorities say Renard Winfield Jr., 29, has been charged with 1st Degree Murder for the death of Tommy Curry.

Renard Winfield Jr., 29, has been charged with 1st Degree Murder for the death of Tommy Curry...
Renard Winfield Jr., 29, has been charged with 1st Degree Murder for the death of Tommy Curry in Iowa City on April 28, 2021.(Johnson County Jail)

At 8:04 P.M. on April 28th, Iowa City Police officers responded to a shots-fired call near the 2400 block of Lakeside Drive.

When they arrived, they found Curry with gunshot wounds. Curry was transported University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and was later pronounced dead.

The Iowa City Police Department continues to request information from anyone who has information regarding this case. Iowa City Area CrimeStoppers is offering a reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to the arrest of the suspect or suspects in this case.

Anyone with information about this crime is urged to contact CrimeStoppers at 358-TIPS (8477) or at www.iccrimestoppers.org. All contacts are held in strict confidence and anonymity is guaranteed. Individuals providing information do not have to reveal their identity to collect a reward.

The case remains under active investigation by the Iowa City Police Department, the Johnson County Attorney’s Office, and the Johnson County Medical Examiner’s Office.

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