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Attempted Murder by Automobile

Monday, January 12, 2015 | 9:01 PM

The Winston County Sheriff Office served warrants on Bobby Wayne Curtis, 43, 22 County Road 3113, Nauvoo, Alabama (Popular Springs) on charges including: Attempted Murder ($500,000 cash bond), Domestic Violence ($500,000 cash bond), and 2 accounts of Reckless Endangerment ($12,000 cash bond). According to Sheriff Rick Harris, the following incident occurred on Friday, January 9, 2015 at approximately 11:00pm near the old Popular Springs Grocery on Highway 195. 

A witness, Paul Dupree, stated to Winston Sheriff Office Investigators, he and his wife saw a vehicle stop near their home. They went to their porch to see what was going on. From their porch they saw three people exit the vehicle. Mr. Dupree said he heard words being exchanged just before the driver began chasing the others with the vehicle. Dupree said the car drove circles around the three chasing them both on and off the roadway. Dupree stated he felt he needed to get involved before the driver hurt someone. As Dupree entered the middle of the conflict, the driver turned his attention to Dupree and charged towards him in the vehicle. Dupree discharged one round from his pistol at the right front wheel striking the rim. The vehicle continued towards Dupree as he sought safety behind a utility pole. Dupree said the driver then left the scene driving North on Highway 195. Dupree later told investigators "I felt the driver was using his vehicle as a weapon and attacking those people."

Once the vehicle had left the scene, Dupree and his wife Kathy assisted two juveniles to the safety of their front porch. Dupree then return to determine the fate of the other man who had been struck by the vehicle. He found Shelton John Mercer, 38, 2708 Florida Avenue, Jasper, Alabama lying in the ditch severely injured. After arrival of emergency personnel, Mercer was transported to UAB Hospital. Reportedly he suffered two broken legs with no life threatening injuries.

Winston County Sheriff Rick Harris stated "Dupree just felt he needed to do something, and he did.  What Dupree did by firing his gun to ward away the attacker, was a heroic act that quite possibly saved lives."

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