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Whoever happens to stop by this blog may wonder why I started it. Whenever I read news stories online I always like to put a face to the story. So I got to thinking maybe other people would as well. I always keep up on WV news and most stories don't have the mugshots with them so I hunt them up online and post them with the story. It's not that hard and I don't know why the state news sites don't do it

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Marbury charged with attempted murder

HUNTINGTON — One of the men wounded in a weekend shooting at a downtown Huntington night club was charged with attempted murder on Wednesday.

Reginald Marbury, 25, was arrested Wednesday after being released from Cabell Huntington Hospital, where he was treated for a gunshot wound to his left leg, police said.

Investigators said Marbury is responsible for shooting Sontezz Lomax, 29, of Huntington. Marbury is being held in the Western Regional Jail on a $103,000 bond.

According to Capt. Rick Eplin, detectives determined that Marbury fired several rounds from a handgun during an exchange of gunfire at Club Babylon, 831 4th Ave., just after 3 a.m. Sunday morning, Nov. 8.

Investigators said Marbury, a Huntington resident whom police identified earlier in the week as a Michigan native, shot and injured Lomax. Lomax, who was released from the hospital Nov. 8, was arrested by members of the Marshall University Police Department for one outstanding capias warrant unrelated to the shooting. Investigators said Marbury and Lomax were involved in a physical altercation prior to the shooting.

Christopher Lewis, 28, of Thurmond, Ohio, also was shot during the incident. He was treated and released from the hospital.

Police officials have not released details as to who shot Marbury or Lewis.

The three men were wounded before police arrived, and a police officer fatally shot a fourth person identified as Joe Jeremaine Porter, 30, of Huntington, police said. Police said Porter pointed a firearm in the officer’s direction.

“As we speak, there is no ballistic information and there is sketchy witness information at best,” Police Chief Skip Holbrook said Wednesday afternoon before Marbury’s arrest was announced. “We have a pretty fair idea of what happened, but I can’t even say at this point that we can 100 percent say exactly what happened.”

Making that determination is dependent upon ballistic testing scheduled to be conducted at a federal laboratory near Ammendale, Md. Analysts will examine firearms, shell casings and projectiles recovered in the investigation. Holbrook said he hoped to receive test results by sometime next week.

An autopsy determined that Porter died from a single gunshot wound to the chest, police said Tuesday. Huntington Police first learned of shots being fired at the club at 3:06 a.m. Medics were treating Porter at the scene eight minutes later. Porter arrived at the hospital at 3:33 a.m. and died from his injuries at 6 a.m.

Among questions remaining unanswered is the name of the police officer who is believed to have shot Porter, as well as some other details of the exchange of gunfire at the club that lasted for several minutes, according to employees.

In withholding the name of the police officer, Holbrook continued to cite the officer’s mental well-being and physical fitness to deal with anything that may come from the release.

Some specifics are strategically being withheld. It is a method police use to corroborate information gleaned from witness interviews. It helps police separate hearsay from first-hand accounts.

“That is some information we keep close to the chest,” Holbrook said. “Once we’ve exhausted all of our interviews, we’ll be able to share how many weapons were seized, how many rounds were fired and things like that.”

Holbrook said officers hope to release much of the information at once, much like his department did when Marshall University Police officers killed a man in May 2008.

“There is so much information to release, and to do it hodgepodge is an injustice to being able to explain everything in its entirety,” he said. “We’re just trying to gather as much information that we can, so we can accurately explain what happened.”

Huntington Police officers and other emergency responders remained extra vigilant and alert Wednesday. Holbrook said it’s part of a continued effort to protect themselves and the public at large in what he continued to describe as an “emotionally charged situation.” He said this week’s incident is no different than typical increased awareness that follows any high-profile event.

The ballistics laboratory analyzing evidence in the case is staffed by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Local authorities do not use the laboratory on a routine basis, but Holbrook said the city’s recent participation in an ATF gun crimes task force made the laboratory a readily available option.


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