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Huntington Homicide Case Bound Over To Grand Jury

Reported by: Send eMail Darrah Wilcox
Reported: Jul. 14, 2014 5:17 PM EDT
Updated: Jul. 15, 2014 10:08 AM EDT
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Stone Hearing
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Huntington , Cabell County , West Virginia

It was standing room only during a probable cause hearing for a Huntington homicide case Monday morning.

"It's a senseless tragedy. I wanted everybody around here to know much Garrett was loved, and how much he was missed and how many lives this actually affected, and he was my brother, so I wasn't going to miss it," said Hannah Bartrum. Bartrum was present when her friend, 19-year-old Garrett Hatten was shot and killed last month near his home on Jackson Avenue. Dylan Stone is charged with murder in connection to that shooting, and he appeared in court for a probable cause hearing Monday.

Police say they believe the shooting happened over a $28.00 drug dispute that escalated to an argument, physical fight, and finally the shooting. Hatten's mother, Kristie Johnson, was also present during the incident and testified at the hearing. "Garrett was fighting him, and the next thing I know I hear the shot," she said.

Stone says the gun went off accidentally, but some witnesses tell a different account of what Stone did with the gun that night. "He turned like this, put the gun in Garrett's chest, and pulled the trigger, " testified neighbor Amanda Saunders.

After hearing testimony from five witnesses, the magistrate ruled there was enough evidence to bound the case to a grand jury. Bartrum said they're happy to see the case moving forward on the what would have been Hatten's 20th birthday. Several dozen friends and family members gathered outside the courthouse after the hearing and sang "Happy Birthday" in Hatten's honor. "We wanted to see justice be done and I'm glad to see the first part of it be done," said Bartrum.

The group said they'll be celebrating in his honor this evening.

Stone's mother and several friends were also at the packed hearing to show their support.



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