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One dead, two injured in shooting near Wise

Mike Still • Feb 3, 2020 at 9:45 PM

WISE — A Norton man is dead and another man and woman injured after a shooting incident in a cemetery near Wise Monday.

Wise County Sheriff’s Captain Charles Sanders said dispatchers received a call shortly after midnight on Monday from a woman, age and identity unavailable late Monday, who had been shot in the back.

Norton Police officers arrived at the Stephens community near Wise and found the woman in a car parked on Limestone Road in a cemetery behind the Stephens Chapel Freewill Baptist Church.

A man found near the scene, Christopher Dale Stevens, 39, of Norton, was pronounced dead.

Deputies and Norton officers searching the scene found a third man, William Mattias Mills, age and address unavailable, hiding in nearby woods and suffering from multiple gunshot wounds.

Sanders said Mills told emergency personnel that the female had picked him up and driven him to a secluded location. After the two arrived, Mills said, someone opened the car’s driver-side door and began shooting at him before he got out of the car and fled the scene.

Sanders said investigators interviewed several witnesses Monday and then questioned Jarred Ray Hash, 39, of 7313 Rasnick Road, Norton. Sanders said Hash told investigators that that he was one of four people who went to the cemetery late Sunday with the intent that the female would bring Mills there so Stevens could assault Mills.

Sanders said that Hash said he waited in the woods before hearing two or three gunshots, and then he went to the car, pulled his weapon and fired at Mills before chasing him into the woods and firing at him multiple times.

The investigation of Stevens’ death is continuing, Sanders said.

Mills was helicoptered to a trauma center in east Tennessee for treatment of multiple, non-life-threatening gunshot wounds before being jailed on a Tennessee fugitive warrant for a pending Virginia assault-and-battery charge. Sanders said that charge was not related directly to the shooting incident.

Hash was charged with the aggravated malicious wounding of Mills and with use of a firearm in the commission of a felony. Hash was jailed without bond at the Southwest Virginia Regional Jail at Duffield.

Sanders said the female was in stable condition with her injuries Monday at an east Tennessee trauma center.

The Norton and Wise police departments, Sheriff’s Department, State Police and Commonwealth’s Attorney assisted in the investigation.

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