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‘We are killers:’ Affidavit tells story of night woman died in Tyler restaurant shooting

July 16, 2021
July 16, 2021(Smith County Jail)
Published: Jul. 21, 2021 at 3:44 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 21, 2021 at 3:50 PM CDT
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - The arrest warrant affidavit obtained by KLTV reveals the role of at least one of the alleged shooters in the events that ended in the death of a woman celebrating her birthday at a Tyler restaurant.

On June 25 at about 11:35 p.m., police received a call about a shooting with multiple victims in the parking lot of New Orleans Flavors Daiquiris, as well as inside the restaurant. Police reported that one woman was shot in the chest and was taken by ambulance to UT Health East Texas. She was identified as Tylsha Brown, an innocent bystander celebrating her birthday with friends and family. She died a short time later.

Tylsha Brown, left, died in the early morning hours of her birthday, June 26, 2021.
Tylsha Brown, left, died in the early morning hours of her birthday, June 26, 2021.(Chalandra Harris)

Two men were also shot, but their injuries were non-life threatening.

According to the affidavit, a Tyler police detective arrived at the scene to find that officers with Tyler PD had begun locating numerous spent shell casings on the north side of the parking lot. He found the restaurant’s glass doors and window were shattered and had bullet holes in them, and he noticed a large amount of blood inside the restaurant.

He was then notified that victim Tylsha Brown had died from her wounds, the affidavit says.

On June 26, the investigator said a tip came in to Smith County Crime Stoppers stating that Dycorrian Lofton and Vadall Johnson were involved in the murder.

Additionally, another detective interviewed a witness who recognized two of the gunmen. He identified Lofton and Johnson as those shooters. He said that he saw a “tall, slim black male” pull a gun out and start shooting in the air. Then he said he saw Lofton pull out his gun and say that they were killers. He said he saw him start shooting a handgun towards the front of the New Orleans Flavors restaurant. He also confirmed it was Lofton when the detective showed him a picture of him.

Later on June 26, Vadall Johnson was arrested by Jacksonville PD, and was booked into the Cherokee County Jail. The investigator drove to Jacksonville to interview Johnson. He said that Johnson told him that he, Lofton and another person were involved in a fight in the parking lot with another group of guys. During that fight, someone started shooting, he said.

He said that it was Dycorrian Lofton, but said that he did not see him do it, because he was running to his car. He told the detective that he heard later that Lofton was shooting, though he didn’t see him with his own eyes. He did say that he talked to Lofton later. The detective asked him if Lofton thought any of the bullets he had fired had killed Tylsha Brown, and he said that Dycorrian Lofton knew that his did not hit her, thereby confirming that he was firing a weapon.

Based on the interviews that were conducted, probable cause was found to arrest Lofton for first degree felony murder. He turned himself in to police on Friday, July 16.

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