TAYLOR COUNTY—A Thornton man has been arrested and charged with murder, after an altercation Wednesday evening.
According to West Virginia State Police Corporal Jeremy Daugherty, he was dispatched to the scene by the Harrison-Taylor County 911 dispatch center, who informed that a caller had reported a deceased individual at a home on Thomas Farm Road.
Once on scene, Daugherty began his investigation, and learned that Jonathan Allen Stewart had died after suffering multiple gunshot wounds.
According to his report, the alleged shooter was 49-year-old Burel Dale Mingus, who resided on the land where the incident took place.
He told the officer that Stewart had come to his 91-year-old father’s home to watch a movie, when an altercation of sorts arose after the elderly man made a comment that was not well received by the victim.
Mingus told the officer he was defending his father when he shot Stewart three times.
According to Mingus, Stewart “took a swing at his father” so he walked next door to retrieve a .38 caliber handgun belonging to his wife.
When he returned to the residence, Mingus alleges that Stewart once again attempted to attack the homeowner, and this time, Stewart was shot once in the back.
According to the complaint, the victim, still in a combative state, tried once more to hit the older male, and that is when Mingus shot him a second time, causing him to fall to the floor.
The complaint states that the defendant advised the officer that the victim was attempting to get up off the floor, while making verbal threats, so “he shot him in the head killing him.”
During the discussion with Corporal Daugherty, Mingus admitted that he was a convicted felon, and knew he should have not be in possession of a firearm.
According to Daugherty, a criminal history check revealed that Mingus has been previously convicted in Monongalia County in November 2004 on the charge of Unlawful Wounding.
Mingus was taken into custody and charged with murder in the second degree as per state code §61-2-1, as well as felon in possession of a firearm per §61-7-7(b)(1), both felony offenses.
If found guilty of his charges, he could face a potential sentence of not less than ten nor more than forty years on his murder charge, as well as up to five years for being a felon in possession of a firearm.
The defendant is currently being held in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail on a $500,000 bond amount.