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Two Hagerstown men charged with malicious wounding of Frederick, Md., man

November 26, 2011|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | matthew.umstead@herald-mail.com
  • Club Twisted in Berkeley County, W.Va. where a Frederick, Md. man was wounded during a shooting.
By Matthew Umstead

FALLING WATERS, W.Va. — Two Hagerstown men accused of shooting a Frederick, Md., man early Saturday at Club Twisted in Berkeley County later were captured by authorities in Washington County, police said.

Warrants charging Leon William Racks, 29, and Joseph Wayne Mason, 27, with malicious wounding in the shooting of Kevin Mullen, 28, were issued Saturday by Berkeley County Magistrate Joan V. Bragg, police said.

Mullen was flown to a hospital where he was being treated for multiple gunshot wounds, but Berkeley County Sheriff's Deputy Lt. Gary Harmison said the injuries were not believed to be life-threatening.

Racks and Mason are being held as fugitives in the Washington County Detention Center, according to the Berkeley County Sheriff's Department.

Deputies patrolling in the area responded to the club's parking lot at 5268 Williamsport Pike when multiple gunshots were fired around 2:30 a.m., deputies said. Mullen was found there suffering from multiple gunshot wounds, but Harmison declined to say how many times the man was shot, deputies said.

Racks and Mason were charged after police obtained witness statements and evidence at the scene, according to a news release from the sheriff's department.

A vehicle that was seen fleeing from the club, which is near Potomack Intermediate School, later was stopped by the Washington County Sheriff's Office, which then detained the men, Harmison said.

Authorities' pursuit of suspects in the shooting later was linked to chain-reaction, six-vehicle crash on Interstate 70 around 5 a.m. that left two people dead, police said.

A bus that left the club immediately after the shooting was stopped on I-70 near New Market, Md., by police, Harmison and Maryland State Police Sgt. J. Stonebraker said.  

Alerted that a suspect in the shooting possibly was riding on the bus, police stopped eastbound traffic out of concern for errant gunfire and searched the vehicle, Stonebraker said.

The traffic stop caused eastbound traffic to back up on I-70 and the multivehicle collision occurred as the driver of a Chevrolet 3500 van failed to control his speed and struck the rear of a Toyota Corolla, which was slowing down because of the traffic stop, police said.

The Corolla spun out of control into the median and caused a chain reaction involving four other vehicles, whose drivers were in the process of stopping behind the Corolla, police said.

The shooting at Club Twisted comes about two months after a 25-year-old Columbia, Md., man died Sept. 25 after being stabbed in the vicinity of the club.

Terrell Coleman died after being stabbed in an altercation in the club's parking lot, police said. Another man also was stabbed, but survived, police said.

Harmison confirmed Saturday that no one has been charged in the fatal stabbing, but the case is being actively investigated by Sheriff's Deputy Michael St. Clair, who is the lead investigator of Saturday's shooting.

Anyone with information about either incident may call St. Clair at 304-267-7000 or Berkeley County Crime Solvers at 304-267-4999.

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