Firearm case going to grand jury

By Tim MacVean

Senior Staff Writer

ELKINS — Probable cause was ruled to have been met for the arrest of a Randolph County man accused of shooting a firearm in the vicinity of other individuals and a dog.

Paul David Owens, 51, of Elkins, is charged with one felony count of wanton endangerment with a firearm. He is free on a $10,000 cash or surety bond, set by Randolph County Magistrate Rob Elbon.

The ruling means his case will be bound over to the Randolph County Circuit Court for presentation to a grand jury.

Randolph County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Leckta Poling represented the state while Owens appeared with Scott Curnutte as defense counsel. Elbon presided.

According to a criminal complaint filed in Randolph County Magistrate Court, on July 22, Randolph County Sheriff’s Office Deputy B.W. Cogar responded to a Cravens Run Road residence regarding a call about shots being fired.

Upon arrival, Owens said another man had pulled off into his driveway, exited an SUV and was “freaking out and cussing” at the vehicle, police said.

Owens said he then noticed a white pit bull running around his property with one of his chickens in its mouth, the complaint states.

He then reportedly admitted to shooting his Ruger 10/22 .22lr rifle at the dog in order to scare it away. He added the dog then charged him and he fired more shots at the dog, court documents state.

Owens said the man in the SUV began cursing him, saying he would kill him and “burn the house down,” according to the complaint. At that time, the man got back into his SUV but leaned out the window and continued to shout and make threats.

As the man was leaving the scene, Owens said he shot the back glass out of the vehicle, according to the complaint.

Owens told police that prior to their arrival, he and the owner of the SUV came to a verbal agreement that each party would be responsible for “any and all damages” to each other’s property. The man who was allegedly cursing at Owens was not at the scene and no statement was obtained from him, the complaint states.

If convicted, Owens could be sentenced to not less than one nor more than five years in the state penitentiary. Or, at the discretion of the court, sentenced to not more than one year in jail, fined not more than $2,500, or both.

Also in Randolph County Magistrate Court:

• Noah Graham Plaugher III, 20, of Beverly, had his charge dismissed without prejudice.

He was charged with one felony count of daytime burglary.

The dismissal without prejudice means the charge could be brought back up at a later date, pending further investigation.

Poling represented the state while Plaugher appeared with Brent Easton as defense counsel. Elbon presided.

• Bond for Megan Rachelle Ware, 22, of Coalton, was modified from $2,500 cash-only to $500 cash-only.

She is charged with one misdemeanor count of cruelty to animals.

Poling represented the state while Ware appeared with G. Phillip Davis as defense counsel. Elbon presided.