Source AP ©

Court files dueling charge against Virginia shooter

The buzz of an all-terrain vehicle may have triggered a deadly shootout that led police to file a rare charge of "murder by duel".

The count, based on a dueling law that predates West Virginia's statehood, was filed Monday against Steven Bryant Simpson, 47, said state trooper J.S. McCarty.

Simpson is accused of killing Dana Martin, 39, in an April 20 shootout a few hundred yards (meters) from Simpson's home.

"We've had shootout-type cases, but I can't recall one quite like this where there was an argument, then the people separated and came back to the very same location, each knowing the other had a gun," said prosecutor Sid Bell.

The law, written in 1849, reads: "If any person fight a duel in this state and in so doing inflict a mortal wound, he shall be deemed guilty of murder." West Virginia became a state in 1863.

The felony carries the same penalty as first-degree murder, up to a life sentence, McCarty said.

Witnesses saw the men argue in the road, part ways to retrieve handguns and return with weapons, Bell said. Testing determined that both weapons were fired. Martin was fatally shot in the torso.

Witnesses told police that Simpson was disturbed by the roaring sound of an ATV that Martin repeatedly drove past Simpson's house while helping a woman move.

A call to Simpson's attorney, Lacy Wright Jr., was not immediately returned.

Comments
Russian air defences ready to shoot down NATO drones and reconnaissance aircraft over Crimea
The Royal Wedding and the Silly Season
Russian air defences ready to shoot down NATO drones and reconnaissance aircraft over Crimea
Kremlin on failed nuclear missile tests: 'Listen to President Putin and believe him!'
Russian air defences ready to shoot down NATO drones and reconnaissance aircraft over Crimea
Science Has Once Again Declared: ‘We Were Created’
Russian air defences ready to shoot down NATO drones and reconnaissance aircraft over Crimea
Iran's next moves on nuclear deal much more important - Kremlin
Venezuela may expect another Panama scenario from 1989
Venezuela may expect another Panama scenario from 1989
Venezuela may expect another Panama scenario from 1989
Venezuela may expect another Panama scenario from 1989
Venezuela may expect another Panama scenario from 1989
Iran's next moves on nuclear deal much more important - Kremlin
Venezuela may expect another Panama scenario from 1989
Venezuela may expect another Panama scenario from 1989
World's most beautiful man lives in Ukraine
Why Putin should say nothing when USA and Germany fight over Russian natural gas
Iran's next moves on nuclear deal much more important - Kremlin
Iran's next moves on nuclear deal much more important - Kremlin
Why Putin should say nothing when USA and Germany fight over Russian natural gas