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Man's death might be tied to shooting in Virginia, cops say

October 15, 2004|by CANDICE BOSELY

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.VA. - The death of a man found lying in the middle of U.S. 11 last weekend might be related to a shooting the man allegedly was involved in recently in Winchester, Va., an investigator in the case said Thursday.

Berkeley County Sheriff's Department Lt. K.C. Bohrer said tips and police interviews indicate that Carlton Edward Robinson, 25, of 119 Church St., Martinsburg, might have been beaten because he shot someone in Winchester.

Bohrer said he spoke to people who were with Robinson at Champs Nightclub and others who were at the club at the same time.

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"Most of them are saying it was retaliation," Bohrer said. "At this point, we're treating this as a possible homicide."

Robinson was found in the northbound lane of U.S. 11 at around 1:30 a.m. Sunday, after police were dispatched to Champs for reports that a fight had occurred and gunshots had been fired, police have said.

Police said that Robinson was found in front of a liquor store that is three stores south of Champs. Both the club and liquor store are less than a mile south of the intersection of U.S. 11, W.Va. 9 and W.Va. 45.

Bohrer said that witnesses have told police that Robinson became involved in a fight at Champs and was kicked, punched, beaten with pool cues and chased down the street. A shattered pool cue with blood on it was found next to him, police said.

Robinson suffered injuries similar to those caused by being hit by a car. Bohrer said he has heard conflicting accounts about whether Robinson being hit by a car was related to the fight.

An autopsy concluded Robinson died of blunt force trauma, but Bohrer would not say whether the trauma was caused by being beaten or being hit by a car or both.

Witnesses said Robinson might have been hit by a gold sport utility vehicle, possibly a Lincoln Navigator or Ford Expedition.

Bohrer said that Robinson allegedly shot someone on Kent Street, a high-crime area in Winchester that is referred to as The Block. An arrest warrant for assault had been issued for Robinson, Bohrer said. He said the shooting happened a few months ago.

Investigators are hoping to speak to a man who uses the street name of "John B.," Bohrer said. "John B.," who reportedly lives in the Winchester area, is believed to own a gold SUV, Bohrer said.

Officers with the Winchester Police Department and Frederick County Sheriff's Department in Virginia are assisting, Bohrer said.

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