Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2021, 4:00 p.m. UPDATE: BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) – A woman walking her dog on the morning of January 15, 2021 noticed a body laying in a backyard. She immediately called for help.
“They discovered a deceased body in the area of Miller Street and that the body appeared to have two gunshot wounds to the torso,” said Detective Nick Walters, with the Beckley Police Department.
That body was later identified as Jerel Saunders. Detectives on the case were able to follow a blood trail from the body and determined the shooting took place on Smith Street in Beckley.
“A clear indication that he was running away from a threat,” Walters said.
Four months later and there are still no answers to who killed the father of two. Detectives learned the body was at the scene for 12 hours before they arrived, making this cases even more difficult to solve.
“In this case we were several, probably roughly 12 hours behind and that’s made it more difficult for us to try and find witnesses and find evidence of the crime,” Walters described.
They are now offering a cash reward through Crime Stoppers of West Virginia, and they already had information come in from those efforts. Now, they hope that information leads to an arrest.
BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — Saturday, Jan. 16, 2021, 12:55 p.m. UPDATE: The Beckley Police Department released the identity of the victim who was shot in Beckley on Friday, Jan.15, 2021. 31-year-old Jerel Saunders of Beckley was found dead around 10:30 a.m. near Smith and Miller Streets.
When police found Saunders, he suffered from multiple gunshot wounds. The Beckley Police Department Detective Bureau is still investigating and treating this as a homicide investigation. If you have any information you are urged to contact Detective Nick Walters of the Beckley Police Department or CrimestoppersWV at crimstopperswv.com or their P3 Tips app.”
ORIGINAL STORY: Friday, Jan. 15, 2021, 3:50 p.m.: Beckley Police are investigating a murder after a man is found dead on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. According to Sgt. Bragg, officers responded to a call at 10:30 a.m.
The body was discovered in an area between Miller and Smith Streets in Beckley. Bragg said the man suffered multiple gunshot injuries. The identity of the victim was not released. Investigators said they are still notifying the family.
Officers are searching the area and collecting evidence.
Anyone with information is encouraged to contact Det. Nick Walter at the Beckley Police Department or CrimestoppersWV at crimstopperswv.com or their P3 Tips app.