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BONO, Ark. – A man is accused of firing his gun at a vehicle with three occupants, hitting two of them, but this may not have been the first crime in this case committed on Monday night in Craighead County.
After our initial story, published when Brandon Bailey, 24, was still being sought by authorities, many reached out saying there was “more to the story.” Bailey turned himself in around 2 PM – after authorities searched for him the entire previous night. He bonded out of jail a few hours later on a temp bond. His probable cause hearing has yet to be held as of this publication but he is facing three charges of criminal intent to commit murder, Sheriff Marty Boyd said. He is also facing a felony charge of possession with intent to deliver (pot). Even though the drug charge was just served, Boyd told NEA Report it was unrelated and separate from this incident.
As mentioned in our initial report, Craighead County Deputy Matt Kirby wrote that “At first,” Matthew Sims – one of the three alleged victims – reported they were traveling in an SUV on County Road 333 when an unknown person started shooting at the vehicle from an unknown. While we didn’t know for sure since the report was mostly masked, it does appear Sims’ story later changed about what really happened.
In private Facebook messages sent to NEA Report by an anonymous source, Sims states that one of his cohorts, Collin Blake Miller, 23, tried to “carhop” Brandon’s house. The term appears to mean steal items from someone’s car. Miller, along with Thomas Hortenberry, 25, were both shot in the incident while Sims was unscathed.
In another message, Sims wrote that he was with Miller and “some other dude” when they pulled up at “Scrappy’s.” Sims said he knew him and got out to talk to him but claims that’s when Miller, without his knowledge, jumped into someone’s vehicle and allegedly stole something.
“Brandon noticed.. I had nothing to do with any of it. I had nothing to do with any of it,” Sims said, in messages we forwarded to investigators.
A similar story is being presented by Bailey.
As Bailey himself later posted Tuesday evening on Facebook, the three alleged victims are accused of coming to Bailey’s home to try to “carhop” from him – or steal things from his car. Bailey also alleged they were armed.
The sheriff could not comment on specifics about this, when we asked.
“The case is still under investigation,” Boyd said.
Less than a year ago, Miller was arrested in Craighead County. His crime? Breaking into and stealing from vehicles. KAIT reported on June 30 and July 4, 2018, a rash of vehicle break-ins was reported on County Roads 713, 730, and 774. Guns, ammo, tools and money were stolen. Miller was already on parole when he was arrested July 4. Authorities say he admitted to breaking into at least six different vehicles.
During the 2018 investigation, a witness reported seeing Miller jumping into a white Hyundai Santa Fe and speeding off from the scene. This is the same color, make, and model vehicle the three alleged victims were in while being shot at Monday night.
Another detail which confused some was why the three alleged victims approached a home on foot at County Road 300 when the shooting happened on County Road 333. Boyd clarified this Wednesday, saying the three young men wrecked the white Hyundai Santa Fe into a ditch before walking on foot to a nearby home. There, an elderly couple cared for the men as authorities responded.
NEA Report continues to investigate this story and assist law enforcement in anyway we can. If you know anything about this, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. You can remain anonymous.