Fugitive arrested in Weirton

STEUBENVILLE – Police Chief Bill McCafferty said Friday he is “very pleased” that Carl Cason Jr. was apprehended by the U.S. Marshals Thursday in Weirton.

“We have been looking for him for some time. We plan to start the extradition process to bring Mr. Cason back to the city to face several charges,” McCafferty said.

According to McCafferty, Cason, 21, faces a felonious assault charge from Jan. 22 for an incident at Heritage Place.

“Cason also faces two felonious assault charges from an incident on June 25 at the Hawk Gas Station on South Seventh Street when he allegedly fired a shot that struck a juvenile in the leg and fired another shot that missed an adult male at the gas station,” said McCafferty.

The Weirton Police Department, Brooke/Hancock Drug Task Force and the Mountain State Fugitive Task Force arrested Cason at 405 Garden Ave. in Weirton Thursday after law enforcement officials received information Cason was residing in Weirton.

According to a press release from the U.S. Marshals office in Wheeling, “Deputy U.S. Marshals knocked and announced with no response and forced entry. They made contact and arrested Cason laying on the living room floor with a loaded .45 caliber pistol within close proximity of Cason.”

“Upon entry law enforcement recognized the odor of marijuana and during the protective sweep observed marijuana blunts and baggier with narcotic residue,” according to the statement.

The Weirton Police Department was in the process of receiving a search warrant for the residence.

The U.S. Marshals press release said Cason also is a known member of the Grape Street Gang in Steubenville.

Cason was sentenced to one year in prison in May 2011 by Jefferson County Common Pleas Judge David Henderson after Cason pleaded guilty to an amended indictment charging aggravated assault.

Cason was charged in connection with a shots fired incident on Feb. 12, 2011, in the 1400 block of Oregon Avenue. Cason initially was indicted on a charge of felonious assault, with a specification of discharging a firearm from a motor vehicle, but the charge was reduced to aggravated assault.

County Assistant Prosecutor Jeffrey Bruzzese said at the 2011 sentencing hearing Cason was involved in an altercation with Chad Hunt of 1910 Majestic Circle. Both men were in separate cars and shots were fired by both at each other, Bruzzese said.

Cason told Henderson that Hunt was following him on Oregon Avenue. Cason said he got out of his car and fired several shots at Hunt’s vehicle, which struck the car.

Henderson asked Cason why he was carrying a gun, and Cason replied, “Because every time I saw him, (Hunt) he was flashing a gun.”

Bruzzese said the aggravated assault charge better fits what happened because there was serious provocation between Hunt and Cason. The specification of shots fired from a vehicle was dropped after Cason said he got out of the car to shoot, Bruzzese said.

Defense attorney Steven Stickles said Hunt did brandish a firearm and there had been an ongoing feud between the men for months.