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W.Va. woman shot outside bar

February 12, 2005|by CANDICE BOSELY

MARTINSBURG, W.VA.

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

A woman was shot once in the upper back early Friday in the parking lot of a Martinsburg bar. Police said they do not believe the wound is life-threatening.

No arrests had been made in the shooting, which is being investigated by officers with the Martinsburg Police Department.

Police identified the victim as Amy Lea Gayhart, 31, of Charles Town, W.Va. By Friday afternoon, investigators still had not been able to speak with her, Detective Sgt. George Swartwood said.

The shooting happened around 3:15 a.m. in the parking lot of the Dark Horse Lounge, a bar in the Wilson Street Plaza. The small plaza is a block away from Martinsburg High School.

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Gayhart initially was taken by a private car to City Hospital, then was flown to Winchester (Va.) Medical Center.

A spokeswoman at the medical center said her company does not release patient conditions.

Swartwood declined to detail the events leading up to the shooting, saying that it is too early in the investigation to release such information. He also would not say what might have motivated the shooting.

When police arrived at City Hospital, they were told that the car that had brought Gayhart to the hospital was leaving. Officers stopped the car and had it towed.

Police found a .380-caliber semi-automatic pistol and magazine inside the car. The gun's slide mechanism and barrel were missing, police said.

Additional items also were seized from the car as evidence, but Swartwood declined to say what they were.

The driver of the car, Tony Darnell Allen, 25, of 521 W. Washington St. in Charles Town, was charged with second-offense driving under the influence and driving on a license that had been suspended for DUI. He was released on $7,500 bail.

Allen was not charged in connection with the shooting.

A passenger in Allen's car was released after he agreed to provide police with a statement about the shooting, police said.

Anyone with information about the shooting may call the Martinsburg Police Department at 304-264-2100.

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