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New Martinsville man charged in alleged armed car-jacking; second suspect fled the scene

One of two men is in custody and facing charges in two counties after allegedly car-jacking a woman at gunpoint in the Bruceton Mills area of Preston County. 

According to a criminal complaint filed in Preston County Magistrate Court, county deputies responded and spoke with the female victim who said she was giving two unknown males a ride when they put a gun to her head and forced her into the back seat, taking over the vehicle. 

The victim told deputies she managed to jump out of the vehicle at which point the two men sped away. 

Law enforcement agencies in the surrounding areas were notified to be on the lookout for the stolen Jeep Patriot and the two men — one in a red shirt and the other “covered in tattoos to include face tattoos.” A short time later a vehicle matching the stolen SUV was found, crashed on the Monongalia County side of Old Route 73, according to a second criminal complaint filed in Monongalia County. 

A Mon County deputy headed to the scene found a man wearing a red shirt walking down the road. He was identified as Chandler Scott Martin, 21, of New Martinsville. According to the complaint, Martin said he was the passenger in the wrecked vehicle and the other man had run off with the firearm. 

After verifying the wrecked vehicle matched the stolen Jeep, Martin was arrested. He is charged with armed robbery in the first degree in Preston County and receiving or transferring a stolen vehicle in Mon County. 

Bond for Martin was set at $200,000 for the armed robbery and an additional $15,000 for the stolen vehicle charge. He is currently being held at North Central Regional Jail. 

As of Wednesday afternoon, the second “tattooed” suspect had not been apprehended. 

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