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The 2003 West Virginia sniper attacks were a series of sniper-style shootings that took place over the course of several days in August 2003, leaving three people dead in the U.S. state of West Virginia. The shootings were reminiscent of the Beltway sniper attacks that took place in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC in the fall of 2002.

The victims in the West Virginia sniper shootings were killed by a single bullet from long distances as they stopped at shops or gas stations. All three victims were killed late at night by the same kind of small-caliber rifle, although police have not determined if all three were murdered with the same weapon. Ballistic tests show that a .22-caliber rifle was used to kill the second and third victims. The first bullet could not be completely checked due to damage, but appeared to have similar characteristics to the other two bullets.

Police said that they were looking for a dark-colored full-size pickup truck. Eyewitnesses believed that the driver was a large white male, but couldn't identify the suspect further due to the darkness. A man was eventually arrested who matched this profile and who had implied to witnesses that he was the sniper, but no charges related to the shootings were ever brought against him.

The police considered the possibility that the shootings were drug-related. The second two victims had drug connections, but the police were not aware of any drug connections for the first victim.

In October 2003, a joint task force investigating the shootings announced a $50,000 reward for information leading to the killer.

In January 2007, a public access TV show host presented a theory that a gang called the Charlton Five carried out the shootings. Andy Palmer, who at the time was the host of “West Virginia’s Most Wanted,” claimed that two victims were chosen randomly to throw suspicion off the gang for killing its intended target, Jeanie Patton. According to Palmer, the leader of the gang sought to murder Patton because her boyfriend had stolen a car engine that belonged to him. The theory was not confirmed though. [1]

The case remains unsolved.

Victims

  • August 10, 2003: Gary Carrier Jr., 44, of South Charleston, was fatally shot while talking on a pay telephone outside a Charleston, West Virginia Go-Mart.
  • August 14, 2003: Both victims were residents of Campbells Creek, West Virginia. They were slain 90 minutes and 10 miles apart.
    • Jeanie Patton, 31, was killed at a Speedway filling station around 10:30. She was struck by a bullet to the back of her head as she was about to pay for gas she pumped.
    • Okey Meadows Jr., 26, was shot in the head while purchasing milk and paying for it through a security window at the Go-Mart on U.S. 60.

See also

External links


The 2003 West Virginia sniper attacks were a series of sniper-style shootings that took place over the course of several days in August 2003, leaving three people dead in the U.S. state of West Virginia. The shootings were reminiscent of the Beltway sniper attacks that took place in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC in the fall of 2002.

The victims in the West Virginia sniper shootings were killed by a single bullet from long distances as they stopped at shops or gas stations. All three victims were killed late at night by the same kind of small-caliber rifle, although police have not determined if all three were murdered with the same weapon. Ballistic tests show that a .22-caliber rifle was used to kill the second and third victims. The first bullet could not be completely checked due to damage, but appeared to have similar characteristics to the other two bullets.

Police said that they were looking for a dark-colored full-size pickup truck. Eyewitnesses believed that the driver was a large white male, but couldn't identify the suspect further due to the darkness. A man was eventually arrested who matched this profile and who had implied to witnesses that he was the sniper, but no charges related to the shootings were ever brought against him.

The police considered the possibility that the shootings were drug-related. The second two victims had drug connections, but the police were not aware of any drug connections for the first victim.

In October 2003, a joint task force investigating the shootings announced a $50,000 reward for information leading to the killer.

In January 2007, a public access TV show host presented a theory that a gang called the Charlton Five carried out the shootings. Andy Palmer, who at the time was the host of “West Virginia’s Most Wanted,” claimed that two victims were chosen randomly to throw suspicion off the gang for killing its intended target, Jeanie Patton. According to Palmer, the leader of the gang sought to murder Patton because her boyfriend had stolen a car engine that belonged to him. The theory was not confirmed though. [1]

The case is unsolved.

Victims

  • August 10, 2003: Gary Carrier Jr., 44, of South Charleston, was fatally shot while talking on a pay telephone outside a Charleston, West Virginia Go-Mart.
  • August 14, 2003: Both victims were residents of Campbells Creek, West Virginia. They were slain 90 minutes and 10 miles apart.
    • Jeanie Patton, 31, was killed at a Speedway filling station around 10:30. She was struck by a bullet to the back of her head as she was about to pay for gas she pumped.
    • Okey Meadows Jr., 26, was shot in the head while purchasing milk and paying for it through a security window at the Go-Mart on U.S. 60.

See also

External links








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