Sad and Totally Unnecessary

By Paul Eilers on 8:25 AM

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Capital Murder Charges Filed Against Shooting Suspects


The four young men police have been questioning after Sunday night's fatal shooting at the University of Central Arkansas have all been arrested charged with offenses including two counts of capital murder each.

Faulkner County Prosecuting Attorney Marcus Vaden announced the charges at a press conference Tuesday afternoon on the UCA campus, and the identities of the suspects, three of whom have Conway addresses according to a Faulkner County Sheriff's Office jail intake report, were also released.

The suspects, according to information provided at the press conference, are Kelcey Sharay Perry, 19, 170 South Ash St., Conway; Kawin Jerod Brockman Jr., 19, 1310 Clifton St., Conway; Brandon R. Wade, 20, 30 Foxrun Lane, Bigelow and Mario LaVelle Toney, 20, 1901 Tyler St., Conway.

All four were transferred from the university police station to the Faulkner County Detention Facility's Unit II at about 10:30 Monday night.

Police are still not revealing any information as to a motive for the shooting that killed two UCA students, Ryan Henderson, 18, of Little Rock and Chavares Block, 19, of Dermott and injured Martrevis Norman of Blytheville. Norman was released from Conway Regional Medical Center on Sunday night after being treated for a wound to his lower thigh.

In addition to the pair of capitol murder charges, each also faces, one count of attempted capital murder, one count of possession of firearms by certain persons, one count of discharge of a firearm from a vehicle, one count of possession of handgun on public school property and eight counts of committing a terroristic act.

These charges "could be ammended ... as the evidence dictates," Vaden said.

Det. Preston Grumbles of the University of Central Arkansas again told the assembled members of the press that authorities do not believe the shooting to be "a random act," though he cautioned that this statement should not be interpreted as one implying that the two killed were the targets of the shooter or shooters.

"I'm by no means saying that the students struck were targets," he said. "They may well have been innocent bystanders."

Police also could not confirm or deny speculation that the shooting was connected to shooting incidents in Pine Bluff earlier Sunday.

It was Toney who was located on Dave Ward Drive by UCAPD in a vehicle on Dave Ward Drive and brought in for questioning three minutes after the shooting, campus police public information officer Rhonda Swindle said. Toney has not been arrested in the past year, according to Lt. Danny Moody of the Conway Police Department, though a police report lists him as the alleged victim in a January terroristic threatening involving a firearm and at least one shot apparently fired by the alleged perpetrator, 19-year-old Leon Britton.

In the hours following Toney's arrest, Wade and Brockman turned themselves in. Brockman was contacted by a CPD officer after a Conway resident said he had reason to believe Brockman had stolen a Springfield Armory .45 caliber Model 1911 semi-automatic pistol. Brockman denied involvement in the theft and refused to be interviewed. According to a report of the incident, Brockman is known by the alias "Lil' Forty."

Wade and Perry, who at about 10:15 p.m. Monday was the fourth and last suspect to turn himself in, were each charged in 2005 with two counts each aggravated robbery and theft of property and one count of possession of a controlled substance. These charges were later dropped and the case dismissed.

Vaden said that he remembered these charges only vaguely, though he believed the charges were dropped after the alleged victims did not cooperate with investigators.

Perry was also arrested by the Conway Police Department on Thursday on charges of fleeing on foot and driving on a revoked or suspended license, but had obviously been released as of Sunday night.

Vaden said that all have prior felony convictions, "hence the possession of a firearm by certain person charges against all four," though he could not recall the exact nature of the convictions.

Grumbles said that investigators were still questioning witnesses Tuesday afternoon, and that the investigation, which has already resulted in all four identified suspects being in custody withing 24 hours, is only beginning.

Vaden said it is too early to determine whether his office will seek the death penalty, though the capital murder charges put the option "on the table."

The four are also considered to have been engaging in what is described in Arkansas Code as "violent criminal group activity," which increases the set penalty range for all charges, according to court documents.

(Staff writer Joe Lamb can be reached by e-mail at joe.lamb@thecabin.net or by phone at 505-1238. Send us your news at www.thecabin.net/submit)

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