Two shootings in 5 days in Marlinton, 1 Was Fatal -What Has Happened to “Mayberry”, WV?

On Sunday, July 3rd, the West Virginia State Police were dispatched in response to a call for a discovered deceased body.  Upon arrival, State Police discovered the body of a female who was later identified as 31-year-old Angela Garretson lying face down in a freshly cut field off of Route 39 in the Eastern part of Marlinton.

Upon further examination by the State Police crime scene team from Elkins, it was found that Garretson had been shot three times, including twice to the back of her head through her hoodie.

On July 6th at about 4 pm, 25-year-old Tanner Moore came to the Marlinton State Police Barracks. He was advised of his Miranda Rights, and then gave a recorded statement to Trooper First-Class D.M. Brock in which he confessed to having shot and killed Garretson. Moore was charged with using a firearm in the commission of a felony and First-Degree murder. He is being held at the Regional Jail without bond. The police have not provided a motive for this shooting as of this time. There has been a rumor around town that Garretson had been brutally beaten as well, but law enforcement sources tell us that is incorrect.

Five days later, on Friday, July 8th, Deputy S.H. Peacock was dispatched to 604 Moses Avenue in Marlinton in response to a trespassing complaint. Mr. Jeffery Moore had told the 911 Dispatcher that he had arrived at his home and found the driveway blocked and people preventing him from accessing his home. Moore also told the dispatcher that his ex-girlfriend had removed a window air conditioner from his house and was throwing things out the window.

While Deputy Peacock was still en-route to the call, dispatch updated him, saying a shot had been fired near the address. Upon arrival, Peacock found Mr. Moore inside his white pick-up truck at the car wash which is next to 604 Moses Avenue. Jeffery Moore was seriously wounded with a gunshot to his abdomen. Moore told Peacock he had been shot by Adam Harwell.

Officers located Harwell near the Moses Avenue address and recovered a Glock 19 handgun from him. Witnesses to the shooting told the officers that Angela Vela and Adam Harwell had come to her ex-boyfriend’s Moses Avenue address to recover her belongings from the house. Vela told the officers that as she walked out of the house to the front porch, she saw Jeffery Moore in the street at the bottom of the driveway, and they began yelling at each other. Adam Harwell began walking toward Moore, who drove towards him. Vela said saw Harwell move out from in front of Moore’s truck and then she heard a gunshot.

In addition to More’s gunshot wound, police observed an apparent bullet hole in the driver’s door of Moore’s truck. Harwell was arrested.

When considering these two shootings, as well as the 17 citizens who showed up at a recent Pocahontas Commission Special Meeting complaining about how their quality of life in several areas of the county outside of Marlinton has been seriously degraded by alleged drug dealers living in their neighborhoods, and their expressed frustrations over their perceptions that local law enforcement has not aggressively enough addressed their complaints to 911 about those issues; perhaps it is fair to wonder what is happening to our “Mayberry” perception of Pocahontas County. The June 28th Special Commission Meeting was reported in a story that can also be found on this website.

Story By

Tim Walker

Tim is the WVMR News Reporter. Tim is a native of Maryland who started coming to Pocahontas County in the 1970’s as a caver. He bought land on Droop Mountain off Jacox Road in 1976 and built a small house there in the early 80’s. While still working in Maryland, Tim spent much time at his place which is located on the Friars Hole Cave Preserve. Retiring in 2011 as a Lieutenant with the Anne Arundel County Police Department in Maryland, Tim finally took the plunge and moved from Maryland to his real home on Droop Mountain. He began working as the Pocahontas County Reporter for Allegheny Mountain Radio in January of 2015.

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