Suspect charged in shooting death of Julius Sampson Jr.

22-year-old Robert Granato has been charged with the murder of Julius Sampson Jr.

Suspect charged in shooting death of Julius Sampson Jr.
August 07
11:57 2019

Following a verbal altercation inside BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse, Julius “Juice” Randolph Sampson Jr. was shot and killed by a man believed to be a supporter of white supremacist views.

According to the police report, around 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 6, officers with the Winston-Salem Police Department responded to a report of a disturbance at BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse, 192 Hanes Mall Circle. Before officers could arrive, the call was upgraded to a report of gunshots being fired and upon arrival, officers found Sampson unresponsive and suffering from an apparent gunshot wound.

Emergency medical personnel responded and later pronounced Sampson dead at the scene.

The investigation revealed after the altercation inside the restaurant between Robert Granato and Sampson, both men left the restaurant where the argument continued in the parking lot. A short time later, Mr. Granato produced a weapon and discharged it, striking Sampson.

The victim, known as Juice throughout the community, was a barber at Supreme Legacy Barbershop located in Hanes Mall. He was recently married and the father of three. When word of his death was made public, the hashtag #JusticeForJuice started to spread like wildfire and hundreds flooded Sampson’s Facebook page to share their condolences. One person wrote, “I woke up so sad this morning thinking about what happened to Julius “Juice” Sampson. That story hit home to a lot of people, especially in Winston.”

In a statement published on Facebook, Sampson’s wife said, “I want the world to know the amazing young man that was senselessly snatched away from me and our family. I want awareness and justice for my husband. My husband wasn’t an animal that deserved slaughtering.”

Robert Granato’s social media footprint shows a person who appears to be obsessed with guns. Granato’s Instagram account shows several photos and videos of the 22-year-old holding and firing guns. While the amount of guns and ammunition in the photos are disturbing, Granato’s most alarming photo may be of him wearing a shirt that reads ‘Murica’ while using his hands to create what can be taken or mistaken as a symbol of white supremacy.

While the investigation is still ongoing, so far Granato has been charged with first degree murder and carrying a concealed handgun after consuming alcohol. Because he is being charged with murder, Granato does not have a bond.

Authorities are asking that anyone with additional information regarding this investigation contact the Winston-Salem Police Department at 336-773-7700 or CrimeStoppers at 336-727-2800. CrimeStoppers may also be contacted via “Crime Stoppers of Winston-Salem” on Facebook.

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Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

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