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Grand jury to hear evidence in Friday Ardmore shooting

By Holly Hollman
hhollman@decaturdaily.com · 340-2445

ARDMORE — It will be up to a grand jury to decide whether an Ardmore man should face charges for shooting a house guest three times, Sheriff Mike Blakely said.

“I think he overreacted a bit by shooting, but we’ll present it to a grand jury to decide,” Blakely said.

Vascar “Thad” Barnett, 39, of 25712 Seventh St., allegedly shot Eric Alan Hinton, 28, of Upper Elkton Road, Ardmore, on Friday about 12:45 p.m., authorities said.

Several people were at Barnett’s home when a fight broke out in the driveway between Hinton and Hinton’s girlfriend, Chief Investigator Stanley McNatt said.

Barnett got a .25-caliber automatic handgun and fired a warning shot at the ground and ordered Hinton to leave, McNatt said.

“Hinton went to his truck, but instead of leaving, he grabbed a fiberglass handle for a car wash brush,” McNatt said. “The handle was longer than a broom handle.”

McNatt said Hinton allegedly hit Barnett on the side of the head, and when Barnett raised his left arm to block a blow, Hinton hit him in the arm.

“That’s when Barnett shot him,” McNatt said.

The shots hit Hinton under his arm and in the stomach.

Three people who witnessed the shooting started to drive Hinton to the hospital but stopped at a yard sale less than a mile from Barnett’s home to seek help. MedFlight flew Hinton to Huntsville Hospital, where he underwent surgery Friday night. McNatt said Saturday that Hinton was in critical condition.

Although authorities have not charged Barnett in the shooting, he is in jail on $2,000 bond, charged with manufacturing a controlled substance, second-degree illegal possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Blakely said that during the shooting investigation, authorities found ingredients at Barnett’s home that are used in the production of crystal methamphetamine.

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