A Salem-area traffic accident led to the discovery of a gunshot victim and prompted an investigation that resulted in charges filed against a Salem 18-year-old.

The Lee County Sheriff’s Office responded to a traffic accident in the 4400 block of Lee Road 175 on Tuesday, authorities said.

Deputies made contact with two people from Columbus, Ga.: Richard James Arlin Coggins, 20, and a 17-year-old.

Coggins was suffering from a non-life-threatening gunshot wound to the upper torso as well as other accident-related injuries, authorities said.

Both people were taken to Piedmont hospital in Columbus for evaluated.

Investigators developed Ulysses Antonio Pickard Jr., 18, of Salem, as a suspect, authorities said.

Investigators conducted a search warrant Thursday at Pickard’s residence in the 4700 block of Lee Road 175, where they recovered evidence connected with the shooting as well as marijuana and drug paraphernalia, authorities said.

Pickard was arrested and charged with first- degree robbery, first- degree assault, second-degree possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia. He is being held in the Lee County Detention Facility on a $152,000 bond.

Authorities ask that anyone with information about this case to call the Lee County Sheriff’s Office at 334-749-5651 or Lee County Crime Stoppers at 888-522-7847.

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