Investigation Reveals Connection Between Two Mercer Co. Incidents

MERCER COUNTY, W.Va (WOAY) –  An armed robbery and an attempted murder within hours of each other and Mercer County deputies were able to make the quick connection and three arrests. It all started with a call to report suspicious people.

When neighbors at the Tremont Park Apartment Complex in Bluewell say they saw a group of people running through their property with weapons, they immediately called 9-1-1. Then, it quickly turned into more than a suspicious person complaint.

Sergeant Rose and other deputies while investigating that suspicious persons complaint stumbled upon some of the occupants that lived at the residence that was robbed,” Detective Sgt. Steven Sommers said. 

Not far from the complex, four juveniles reportedly entered a home with a firearm and robbed it of a PlayStation 4, money and other undisclosed items. The four made their getaway with an adult driver from the Tremont Park Apartments. While deputies were investigating, the case became even more serious. 

“9-1-1 receives a 9-1-1 call from an individual stating that they had been involved in an altercation. They were somewhere in the area of Hurricane Ridge Road commonly referred to as Wild Man’s. Phone went dead. All the deputies responded trying to locate these individuals but were unable to locate anybody,” Sommers said. 

Then came the call from Bluefield Regional Medical Center to Bluefield Police saying they had two juveniles who had been involved in an altercation on Hurricane Ridge Road. Both beaten and one with a gunshot wound. Mercer County Deputies were then sent to the hospital to investigate.

“And while speaking with these individuals, they were able to make a connection between the earlier Hurricane Ridge call as well as the call of the robbery,” he said.

On September 4th, Kristopher Church was arrested for being an accessory before the fact to the attempted murders of the two juveniles. He was the one who reportedly picked them up and took them to the location where they were beaten and shot at.

The two juveniles were reportedly involved with the robbery which made investigators believe this was retaliation. So far, only Church and two juveniles involved in the robbery have been arrested. The rest is still under investigation.


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Anna Saunders is a weekend reporter for WOAY. With a diploma from Princeton Senior High School and a mother from Fayette County, she is no stranger to the area. She received a degree in Media Arts and Design from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia and wanted to return home to start her career as a reporter.