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W.Va. man faces charges in girlfriend's shooting

September 20, 2005|by CANDICE BOSLEY

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - A Martinsburg man who claimed he accidentally shot his girlfriend once in the chest while trying to set down a gun was charged over the weekend in the shooting, according to court records.

Dustin Wayne Stout, 22, of 102 Eclipse Court, Apt. 7, was arraigned Saturday on one count of wanton endangerment with a firearm.

The shooting happened at about 8 a.m. last Thursday in Stout's apartment, according to Detective Scott Doyle of the Martinsburg Police Department.

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Amanda "Mandy" Chaney, Stout's girlfriend, was taken to City Hospital and later to Winchester (Va.) Medical Center for treatment of the wound, which police have said was not life-threatening.

Both Chaney and Stout told police the shooting was an accident, Doyle said last week.

When police responded, officers found a .38-caliber revolver under a bed in the couple's apartment at Fairlawn Garden, an apartment complex off North Queen Street, records state.

The revolver had one shell in its cylinder with the firing pin placed on it. Stout told police that he had the gun in his pocket, where he carried it for protection, records state.

He told police he thought he emptied the gun, but did not clearly see if it was empty. After cocking the gun's hammer, Stout said he was putting the gun down when it fired, records state.

A 13-year-old boy who was in the room at the time of the shooting told police that Stout pulled the gun from his pocket and emptied it, but then put one round back into the cylinder, court records state.

"(The boy) further advised that Mr. Stout was playing with the gun and was pointing it at Mandy, when the gun fired," Doyle wrote in a criminal complaint filed in Berkeley County Magistrate Court.

Stout was charged with a felony count of cultivation of marijuana after police found a large marijuana plant growing near a bedroom window in the apartment, records state.

Conviction on a charge of wanton endangerment with a firearm carries a sentence of one to five years in prison, or an alternative sentence of one year in jail.

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