Behind bars

Published 9:54 am Tuesday, April 5, 2016

TARBORO – The final suspect allegedly involved in a March 25 shooting just outside of Murfreesboro was taken into custody here in the early morning hours of Monday.

Antwan Vaughan

Antwan Vaughan

Hertford County Sheriff Juan Vaughan said that Antwan Vaughan, age 29, of 151 Vann’s Road, Murfreesboro, was found in hiding at the residence of a female acquaintance on Vinson Drive in Tarboro.

“We received information he was there and a coordinated effort between multiple law enforcement agencies was put into place to bring Mr. Vaughan to justice,” the Sheriff said.

HCSO Lt. Investigator Dexter Hayes and Investigator Chase Oliver were on the scene in Tarboro. There they were joined by members of the Tarboro Police Department, Greenville Police Emergency Response Team and Violent Crime Apprehension Team, and the North Carolina SBI Fugitive Task Force.

“They were able to set up a strong perimeter around the apartment building where it was believed that Mr. Vaughan was hiding and using a megaphone he was ordered to come out and surrender,” Sheriff Vaughan stated. “Mr. Vaughan chose to attempt to escape by jumping out of a second story window of the apartment, but the officers had him surrounded by the time he hit the ground.”

Antwan Vaughan was arrested and transported back to Hertford County where he faces three felony counts of attempted murder, one felony count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, one felony count of conspiracy, and misdemeanor counts of discharging a firearm into an occupied dwelling and discharging a firearm into an occupied vehicle.

He is currently being held under a $975,000 secured bond in the Hertford County Detention Center and is scheduled to make his first court appearance today (Tuesday).

“I would like to thank my officers along with the other agencies involved for their work on this case. It makes me happy to know that this violent criminal is now off the streets and no longer poses any danger to the public.”

Antwan Vaughan is the fourth and final suspect arrested in the March 25 shooting. Three others – 22-year-old Deangelo Devonte Smallwood of 408 Spring Ave., Murfreesboro; 30-year-old Earl Lamont Powell of 106 Standing Lane, Murfreesboro; and Shenondoah Perry, age 20, of 186 Pinetops Circle, Murfreesboro – were taken into custody on Monday, March 28. They were found hiding at a residence on Parker Road in Northampton County, located just off US 258 south of Murfreesboro.

Perry and Smallwood were each charged with three felony counts of attempted murder, one count of felony conspiracy, and a misdemeanor count of shooting into an occupied dwelling. They are currently behind bars in the Hertford County Jail, each under a $750,000 secured bond.

Powell is being held under a $950,000 bond on three felony counts of attempted first degree murder, one felony count of conspiracy, one felony count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and one misdemeanor count of shooting into an occupied vehicle.

All four stand accused in this case that also involved two other adults and a two-year-old child at Serenity Mobile Home Park located on Wise’s Store Road just outside of Murfreesboro. Both adults suffered gunshot wounds to the head and have since been released from Vidant Medical Center in Greenville. The two-year-old was not injured, although a bullet left a hole in the child’s drinking cup inside the vehicle.

The incident was reported to the Sheriff’s Office through a call from the Murfreesboro Police Department. Upon the arrival of Oliver at the MPD shortly past midnight on March 25, he reported seeing the two victims on the ground of the MPD parking lot. Both, he said, were bleeding from wounds in their head, but one had managed to drive the bullet-riddled vehicle to the Murfreesboro Police Department.

In his report, Oliver said he was able to speak with the female victim who said she and her boyfriend, accompanied by his son, were pulling into the driveway of their home when, “guys came around and started shooting at the vehicle.”

The child was left in the care of the Murfreesboro Police Department until a caregiver arrived and took custody.

Both victims were initially transported by Hertford County EMS to Vidant Roanoke-Chowan Hospital in Ahoskie prior to being transferred to Vidant Medical Center due to the extent of their injuries. While at Vidant RCH, Hayes was able to interview the male victim at which time the identity of the four suspects was developed.

Meanwhile, Oliver processed the victims’ vehicle parked at the Murfreesboro Police Department. He discovered a bullet lodged in the trunk lid, and another inside the trunk.

“The vehicle was basically riddled with bullet holes from the rear of the vehicle, all the way down the side to the front head light, including the front windshield,” Sheriff Vaughan noted.

Based on the statement of the female victim, a crime scene was developed at Serenity Mobile Home Park. Evidence was collected there, to include numerous shell casings from a .40 caliber weapon.

As far as a possible motive to the shooting, Sheriff Vaughan said the investigation leads him to believe that an earlier altercation between the male victim and at least one of the suspects prompted the shooting.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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