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Affidavit describes incidents in days before Schoolfield was shot to death
Friday, July 13, 2012
By DEBBIE HALL - Bulletin Staff Writer
An affidavit filed in connection with the shooting death of a Martinsville man details an argument between the victim and another man.
Lance Schoolfield, 19, of Elder Court, Martinsville, was found dead Tuesday, lying in the kitchen floor in Apartment 1, 106 Moss St., police have said.
He died from a single gunshot wound to his temple, according to an affidavit filed with two search warrants — one for Apartment 1 and another for Apartment 2 — at 106 Moss St.
Witnesses told police that Schoolfield and another man got into a verbal argument July 4, the affidavit stated.
The argument ended when the other man allegedly got a .45 caliber handgun from Apartment 2 and showed Schoolfield the print of the weapon from under his shirt, according to the affidavit.
The night before his death, Schoolfield and two other men allegedly were drinking alcohol together in Apartment 1, the affidavit stated.
Around 1:50 a.m. Tuesday, a neighbor reported hearing a “pop, and then what sounded like someone fall from inside 106 Moss St.,” the affidavit stated.
Witnesses then heard another man allegedly yell “Get up, man. Get up, man,” according to court documents.
One of the two men Schoolfield was with Monday night was convicted of first degree murder in August 1972, the affidavit stated.
Police were summoned to Moss Street after receiving a call of a possible gunshot victim around 7:56 a.m. Tuesday, according to the affidavit.
Martinsville Police Officer M.L. Peters was the first one on the scene, and through the open front door of Apartment 1, he saw Schoolfield dead on the kitchen floor with the apparent gunshot wound to his temple, the affidavit stated.
Emergency medical crews responding to the scene pronounced Schoolfield dead at the scene, the affidavit added.
Police have said Schoolfield did not live in the apartment but had acquaintances there.
When executing the search warrants, investigators looked for handguns, ammunition, trace evidence such as DNA or blood-spattered items and any other items that could reasonably be associated with murder, use of a firearm in commission of a felony and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, the affidavit stated.
Authorities seized a number of items, including a black 9 mm handgun from the apartment in which Schoolfield’s body was found, according to court records.
Also seized from that apartment were a broken “Power Balance” bracelet; three live (unfired) .380 (caliber) rounds; two samples (swabs) of a reddish stain from two areas of the living room floor; a spent (fired) .380 cartridge casing; a photo ID card belonging to Schoolfield; and $1 in U.S. currency, court documents showed.
Authorities also inventoried Schoolfield’s personal items, including a backpack, shoes, helmet, fishing pole, sweatshirt, hand sanitizer and fishing bait, according to court documents.
In Apartment 2, authorities seized a wash rag and swabs of a reddish stain that was on the bathtub, court documents showed.
Martinsville Police Capt. Eddie Cassady said Thursday the case remains under investigation, and authorities are awaiting evidence from the Medical Examiner’s Office and the Forensic Lab, both in Roanoke.
“Then, we’ll go from there,” he said, and encouraged anyone with any information about Schoolfield’s death to call the Martinsville Police Department at 638-8751 or anonymously call Crime Stoppers at 63CRIME (632-7463).
Rewards of up to $1,000 are available through Crime Stoppers for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for certain unsolved crimes. The amount of any reward is determined by the nature of the crime and the substance of information provided.