Witness Speaks Out About Henry Co. Homicide - WSET.com - ABC13

Witness Speaks Out About Henry Co. Homicide

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Reporter: Sally Delta

Henry Co., VA - We have a first hand account of the shooting in Henry County Saturday night that left one man dead. Deputies say it happened around 7:00 p.m. on Jade Court in the Axton area.

When authorities arrived, they found Maurice Centell Clanton, of Martinsville, lying on the ground with what appeared to be multiple gunshot wounds. Clanton was pronounced dead on the scene.

Neighbors say the night of the shooting cops were spread out miles from the scene.

"There was a state trooper on the side of the road and police were everywhere. I wasn't too sure what was going on," neighbor Gordon Martin said.

But Carl Preston says he is sure of what happened. He was visiting family that live on Jade Court. Preston says it started off as a nice evening; friends were outside rapping and beat boxing together. That's when an argument broke out.

"I can't believe this happened. I wish there was some way I could have stopped it but there wasn't. There was nothing I could do," witness Carl Preston said.

Preston alleges Clanton walked up to the shooter, and started yelling at him. Preston says the shooter never yelled back; he stayed quiet. Preston says he himself tried to break it up until he saw a gun.

"When it fired off... I'm still shaking from it," Preston said.

Preston says he saw Clanton lying in the yard, shot 3 or 4 times in his chest and torso. He was friends with both men and wishes the argument could have gone in different direction.

"Pick up fists and fight put down the gun, to me, a gun is nothing. If we've got a beef with each other I'd rather fight you than kill you, you know, be happy," Preston said.

Investigators say they have spoken with an individual involved with the shooting and he is cooperating with the investigation. 

Anyone with information pertaining to this homicide is asked to contact the Henry County Sheriff's Office at (276) 638-8751.

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