Charleston Beard Identified in Chattanooga Homicide

Reported by: Alisha Searl
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Updated: 3/21/2013 7:00 pm
Manuel Bernal, a Chattanooga resident, says, "We were all standing in our kitchen over there. It was around 8:30 p.m. and we all heard gunshots."

Three or four of them, and in an instant Bernal and his roommates hit the floor.

Andrew Pack, Bernal's roommate, adds, "We all looked at each other and one of us said duck, and we all thought that was a pretty good idea."

Little did they know, just 25 feet away, Charleston Beard, 22, was laying in an alley on Vance Avenue shot to death.

Stephen Byard also heard the gunfire.

He lives a couple of houses down, and called police.

Byard adds, "I called their actual phone number and said, "Hey, something just happened at the corner of Kirby and Kelly."

Besides the gunshots, neighbors ay they did not hear or see anything else suspicious.

They did not even see cars drive through the alley.

Pack says, "This guy's got a flood light right here and at night we can tell if someone is walking up and down."

Chattanooga Police continue to process what looks like a pretty barren crime scene.

Byard adds, "Scary."

Neighbors also have a lot of unanswered questions Thursday night, like how did this happen, and why didn't police find the body when they called about the gunfire earlier that night?

Bernal says, "They didn't come out here until three hours later around 11 or so."

Pack adds, "Maybe they get too many calls that aren't really gunshots? Maybe they needed enough people calling to say this is a legitimate concern."

When researching the shooting victim, Charleston Beard, we found out he has been charged with several crimes in 2011.

Those include attempted aggravated robbery, aggravated assault, and theft of property, among others.
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