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District Attorney & SBI: Officer Used Proper Force In Shooting Vanceboro Suspect

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VANCEBORO, NC (WITN) - The State Bureau of Investigation says a Vanceboro police officer acted correctly when he shot and wounded a man who deputies say shot three people ten days ago.

District Attorney Scott Thomas says Officer Jason Lovick used proper force when he shot John Jenkins on Streets Ferry Road.

The 82-year-old Vanceboro man is accused of shooting two tree trimmers working near his home, as well as a neighbor who was directing traffic away from the shooting.

Lovick had been placed on administrative leave with pay after the shooting, which is standard procedure in officer-involved shootings.

Jenkins was released from Vidant Medical Center on Thursday and is now at Central Prison's hospital in Raleigh.


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A man accused of going on a shooting spree nine days ago outside of Vanceboro is out of the hospital and has been formally charged.

John Jenkins is now charged with three counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury, four counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill, one count of discharging a weapon into occupied property and one count of assault with a deadly weapon on a law enforcement officer.

The 82-year-old Vancebroro man was arraigned in a vehicle outside the Craven County Courthouse and then transferred to Central Prison's hospital in Raleigh. His bond was set at $2 million.

Authorities say Jenkins wounded two tree trimmers working near his home, as well as a neighbor who was directing traffic away from the active shooting. Jenkins was ultimately shot by a Vanceboro police officer in the face and head.

The three victims in the shootings were released from the hospital the next day.

His next court date is September 19th.


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An elderly Craven County man has now been charged with Tuesday's shooting spree outside of Vanceboro, while all of the victims are now out of the hospital.

Sheriff Jerry Monette tells WITN News that John Jenkins is charged with assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill.

Monette says the man was irate at the tree trimmers and wounded three people before an officer returned fire and injured him.

The SBI has identified that officer as Jason Lovick with the Vanceboro Police Department. Officer Lovick has been placed on administrative leave with pay until the SBI investigation into the shooting is completed, which is standard procedure in such shootings.

Monette says the call came in around 4:43 p.m. of a shooting on Streets Ferry Road about a quarter to a half mile from West Craven High School.

The sheriff said it appears the 82-year-old Jenkins had an emotional or mental health issue.

Two tree trimmers, Angelo Williams and Brian Holden, were wounded first by a shotgun. Williams was stuck in the face, while Holden was hit by pellets in his mid-torso.

Authorities say Jenkins then went down the road and fired at two other workers who were in bucket trucks. They were not hit.

A few minutes later Billy Dail, who lives on Streets Ferry Road, was shot. Dail was wounded as he was trying to direct traffic away from the active shooting scene. He was hit on the left side of the face, head and hand.

The sheriff says Jenkins will be taken into custody on the initial charge, once he is released from Vidant Medical Center. Monette says at that point numerous other charges will be brought against the man.

Jenkins, who was hit in the face and head, is listed in critical condition at Vidant this afternoon.

The sheriff says the suspect suffers from dementia and old age and that they have dealt with him in the past. Monette says the man is a Korean War veteran who may suffer from post traumatic stress disorder.

Asked why Jenkins was upset, the sheriff says he's not sure. Monette says possibly the company, Townsend Tree Service, trimmed some trees and didn't remove limbs from his property.

Monette says Jenkins probably shot at between ten and twelve people.


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A law enforcement source tells WITN News that the owner of a campground opened fire on tree trimmers Tuesday afternoon.

The source identified the gunman as John Jenkins. The man owns Chip's Camp Ground on River Road, not far from the shooting location.

Craven County Sheriff Jerry Monette says the man was irate at the tree trimmers and wounded three people before officers returned fire and injured him.

Monette says the call came in around 4:43 p.m. of a shooting on Streets Ferry Road about a quarter to a half mile from West Craven High School.

The sheriff said it appears he has an emotional or mental health issue.

Monette says a neighbor came out of a house to see what was going on, turned around when he saw the man with a gun, and was shot.

Lisa Henderson was visiting her daughter on Streets Ferry Road when the shooting happened. She says her daughter's father-in-law, Billy Dail, was the one shot when he came out of a house. She was unsure of his condition.

Monette says officers shot the gunman near that incident with the neighbor near the intersection with Cow Pen Landing Road.

It's unknown how serious the victims injuries are. Monette termed them serious, but not grave.

The three victims are being treated at hospitals in Craven County and Greenville.

A supervisor with the tree trimming company Townsend says two of their sub-contractors were injured, and he believes they will be OK.

Monette says the gunman was airlifted to Vidant Medical Center.

District Attorney Scott Thomas says the SBI is investigating the officer involved shooting, which is standard procedure.

Stay with WITN and WITN.COM for further updates.


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Multiple people have been shot outside of Vanceboro this afternoon.

Authorities confirm there has been a shooting on Streets Ferry Road.

Neighbors tell WITN News that multiple people have been shot, while a witness says he heard deputies open fire on the gunman.

At least two medical helicopters have landed at the scene.

The shooting happened near the intersection of Cow Pen Landing Road. Authorities have closed Streets Ferry Road to all traffic.

A witness says it happened right near his home. He says a man in a silver pickup truck was in some sort of argument with people on the side of the road, and that the man then started shooting.

The witness says after shooting at the construction workers, the gunman drove down Streets Ferry Road and shot a neighbor who was in his yard.

The man tells us officers then were able to box the gunman in and he then heard officers open fire. Reports indicate the gunman was shot.

A family member of one of the victims says her uncle heard gunshots, went outside to see what was happening and was shot in the head.

We will bring you updates to this developing story as soon as they are available.


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