(02/12/2020)
WOMAN DEAD - Charleston Police are investigating a homicide on Charleston’s West Side.

Police say a woman was found dead on the 600 block of Georgia Street on Charleston’s West Side. Police also say that they believe, but have not confirmed, this may be related to the officer-involved shooting that happened a few blocks away this morning on the West Side.

CHARLESTON MAYHEM - Charleston Police Chief Tyke Hunt says multiple incidents this morning led up to an officer firing shots at a suspect on Charleston’s West Side.

Police say Charleston Police Officer Austin Casto was struck in the head multiple times with a weapon, reported to be a flat iron. Officer Casto tried to create distance between himself and the suspect but was forced to draw his gun in the altercation.

The officer fired two shots at the suspect. Both were taken to the hospital for their injuries. The officer is fine and at home recovering. The suspect has made it through surgery and is at the hospital being guarded by police.

Hunt says police believe the incident is related to a homicide this morning on the 600 block of Georgia Street, a carjacking in Edgewood, and a car crash and attempted carjacking near Lee Street and Tennesse Street, all on Charleston’s West Side. The Charleston Police Department is investigating these cases. Hunt said there is no threat to the public.

CPD is working with the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office in the investigation in the officer-involved shooting. Hunt also says the suspect could be charged with first-degree murder.

Hunt says he thanks all of the departments who responded to the scenes including, West Virginia State Police, St. Albans Police Department, Charleston Fire Department and everyone who helped respond.

Sheriff Mike Rutherford says the Kanawha County Sheriff’s department is investigating the case.

“We are extremely happy the officer was not injured more than what he was,” Rutherford said.

Rutherford says as the officer was being attacked, a witness moved in to assist the officer before the shots were fired.

“He was also a hero in this,” said Rutherford. “You don’t have very many citizens that would actually go out and try to help an officer when he’s being attacked. We deeply appreciate that.”

FRAT FIGHT - A Charleston man was arrested after he fired a gun during a fight between two West Virginia University fraternities on Feb. 2, police said.

According to the criminal complaint, WVU Police responded to the 700 block of Naomi Street about a large fight and possible shots fired. When they arrived, all parties had left the area.

Police say they noticed two people sitting on the 700 block of Spruce Street.

After speaking to the people, police learned the fight happened between the Sigma Chi fraternity and the Phi Sigma Kappa.

One witness told police he saw a black man wearing a gray sweatshirt pull a pistol and point it at him and his friend. The man walked away from the witness.

A witness from the Sigma Chi fraternity said that they and the Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity got into a fight outside, according to the criminal complaint. During the fight, a black man wearing a gray sweatshirt said he would be back with a gun.

Moments later, the man showed up and pulled a pistol out, court documents state. He kept it in his hands, at which everyone from the Sigma Chi fraternity fled to their house.


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