A South Side man is awaiting a preliminary hearing on charges stemming from June 26 gunfire outside of an East Washington Street tavern.
New Castle police, after further investigation, have arrested Bryant R. Binns, 26, of 838 E. Lutton St., as the second of two people accused in the disturbance that erupted around 1 a.m.
They previously had arrested Robert Lee Sutton Jr., 34, of 513 Whippo St., for actually having fired the shots. Sutton was charged in the incident the same day as the shooting.
According to a criminal complaint filed against Binns, the police were called to the Double D Cafe at 404 E. Washington St. early that morning regarding a man with a semiautomatic rifle who was standing across the street from it, threatening to shoot up the bar. He then reportedly went behind the bar and fired four shots, according to reports.
An employee of the business told police that a man nicknamed "D" was arguing with another man next to a van. She said she tried to break up the fight but the two men started fighting in the street. She said she saw a man get out of the van with a rifle, yelling, and she heard gunshots, according to the complaint.
A city police officer had received information that Sutton had fired the shots and that Binns was present at the time.
The police later found the van outside of a house on Dushane Street, and the police questioned three men who were in it — the driver, Sutton and Binns.
The driver told police that he had driven Sutton and Binns to the bar. He said that Binns and another man had gotten into a fight, and Sutton took something from the back seat. The driver later told police that Sutton had gotten out a rifle, and he heard shots fired. He later drove Sutton back to the bar area later that evening to get the rifle from where he had hidden it in the weeds, he allegedly told police.
Sutton told police that he fired several shots behind the building after Binns had been in the fight, believing the man whom he was fighting had gone to get a gun. He said that when he went back later to get the gun from the weeds, he gave it to Binns, according to the court papers.
The police obtained a search warrant for the house on Dushane Street, where they allegedly seized a loaded air rifle and handgun and ammunition.
The police noted that Binns, because of past criminal history, is not allowed to have a gun.
Chippewa police in Beaver County reported to New Castle officers that the handgun had been reported stolen.
Binns was charged July 2 with two counts of possession of a firearm and one count of receiving stolen property. Binns is also is facing multiple drug charges filed June 26 for alleged drug dealing activity. His preliminary hearing on all of his charges is set for July 25 in Central Court. He is in the Lawrence County jail on a total of $115,000 in bonds.
Sutton faces one count each of possession of firearm prohibited and discharge of firearm prohibited, and three counts of recklessly endangering another person, in connection with the gunfire. He is in jail on $100,000 bond. His preliminary hearing on those charges is set for July 17 in Central Court.