TARGET 8: No arrest in Army vet's death despite accused shooter's record

1 year 6 months 2 days ago Friday, June 16 2017 Jun 16, 2017 Friday, June 16, 2017 9:40:00 PM CDT June 16, 2017 in Target 8
By: James Packard, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - The man accused of shooting and killing an Army vet during a fight in a north Columbia home last month hasn't been arrested. Friends of the man left dead in the fight say the man who they say fired the gun should be held accountable for their friend's death. According to them, his criminal history shows he poses a threat to the public.

The shooting

28-year-old Cameron Caruthers died May 22 when he and Ricky Gurley got into some kind of confrontation at a home on Dawn Ridge Drive. 

Caruthers lived at the house on and off with his girlfriend, according to friends. Gurley also lived there. 

Mike Francis, a friend of Caruthers', said Caruthers was not living at the home on May 22, but he went to the house to get several sentimental items, while in the middle of a fight with his girlfriend.

Francis said Caruthers did not force his way into the house, despite police being initially dispatched to respond to a home invasion. Francis said Caruthers' girlfriend let him in. 

When he showed up, Francis said, Caruthers and Gurley started fighting.

"Rick had pulled a shotgun out," Francis said. "You know [Caruthers] had his hands in the air, he said, 'What are you gonna do? Are you gonna shoot me, Rick?'"

According to friends, that's exactly what Ricky Gurley did.

Gurley's lawyer, Stephen Wyse, corroborated that in a call with KOMU 8 News a few says after the shooting. He said the shooting was not a criminal act.

"I believe the use of force was, was justified," Wyse said. "There was a recording of the event as it was occurring that was provided to the police. After, you know, listening to that recording, the police made the determination that an arrest was not appropriate."

Wyse added that Caruthers' was told several times to leave and that he was regarded as a threat.

Gurley was questioned and released, but according to friends, his criminal record should be enough to get him behind bars.

The record

Ricky Gurley spent four months behind bars in North Carolina for felonious restraint, larceny, and other charges.

While his record as a felon makes it illegal for him to carry a firearm, at least three sworn affidavits provided to KOMU 8 News say Gurley has at least one gun. One person said Gurley stated he had the, "right to protect his home regardless of his felon status." 

That same person, as well as two others, said they saw a gun in Gurley's home.

Gurley has also earned a reputation as an abusive stalker.

According to a 2013 protection order, Gurley stalked and harassed a woman who used to work for him. She said, at one point, he called her 13-year-old son's cell phone and said, "You're gonna die broke, b****."

Gurley is accused, on numerous occasions, of threatening to hurt people or ruin people's lives. Court documents included archived emails which were strewn with offensive words and vague threats.

Police records provided to KOMU 8 News show officers were dispatched to Gurley's home between one and four times every year between 2010 & 2016. In 2017, that number jumped to 20, seven before the May 22 shooting.

When KOMU 8 News asked Gurley's lawyer about the frequent visits from police, Wyse said, "I'm not gonna comment on that."

But for Caruthers' friends, Gurley's extensive record speaks volumes about his behavior. 

Michelle Walcott, a friend of Caruthers', said, "I feel like this could have been prevented if [Gurley] had already been in jail."

The follow-up

Francis and others want the Columbia Police Department to arrest Gurley, if for nothing else, on a weapons charge. 

"Felon with a firearm, felon with a firearm," Francis said. "How is he not in jail?"

KOMU 8 News reached out to the Columbia Police Department Thursday. Spokesperson Bryana Larimer said, "You know investigations take time."

"This guy is, this guy is a nuisance to the public!" Francis said. "He's disgusting!"

Francis said he worries the Columbia Police Department is working to make a bigger case against Gurley than a simple gun charge before they arrest him. But, he worries that there could be a dangerous man on the streets in the meantime. 

"If anybody else would have done this, you know, yeah, cool, build a case on it," Francis said. "But this guy? Stick him in a cell!"

When asked if that was the case, Larimer said she wasn't at liberty to speculate about what the investigators might be working on.

The Columbia Police Department also would not say if anyone else was under investigation.

Walcott said, "Rick Gurley's really the only one that I think was at fault in this."

"This will not go away," Francis said. "This will not be swept under the rug. And we will get to the bottom of this."

 

 

Related Stories

More News

Grid
List
CALLAWAY COUNTY - A jury trial for two defendants in the death of Carl DeBrodie has been postponed, according to... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 17 2018 Dec 17, 2018 Monday, December 17, 2018 5:45:00 PM CST December 17, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Council members agreed to narrow down the number of hiring companies who applied to be in charge of... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 17 2018 Dec 17, 2018 Monday, December 17, 2018 2:37:00 PM CST December 17, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – Emergency crews spent most of Monday morning removing a semi-truck from a front yard after it veered off... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 17 2018 Dec 17, 2018 Monday, December 17, 2018 2:16:00 PM CST December 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Motorists are advised to avoid the area near Missouri Boulevard this evening, from the intersection of West... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 17 2018 Dec 17, 2018 Monday, December 17, 2018 1:34:00 PM CST December 17, 2018 in News
FLORISSANT (AP) — Authorities say a 12-year-old boy accidentally shot and killed his 6-year-old sister in suburban St. Louis while... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 17 2018 Dec 17, 2018 Monday, December 17, 2018 12:00:00 PM CST December 17, 2018 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A Missouri poacher has been ordered to repeatedly watch the movie "Bambi" as part of his sentence... More >>
1 day ago Monday, December 17 2018 Dec 17, 2018 Monday, December 17, 2018 10:18:00 AM CST December 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - SSM Health and MU Health Care will host the last of three scheduled public forums Monday night... More >>
2 days ago Monday, December 17 2018 Dec 17, 2018 Monday, December 17, 2018 3:10:00 AM CST December 17, 2018 in Top Stories
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A 57-year-old southwestern Missouri man has pleaded guilty in federal court to a $2.4 million wire fraud... More >>
2 days ago Sunday, December 16 2018 Dec 16, 2018 Sunday, December 16, 2018 9:48:54 PM CST December 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri sent out an MU Alert just before 6 p.m. Sunday to warn people about... More >>
2 days ago Sunday, December 16 2018 Dec 16, 2018 Sunday, December 16, 2018 6:45:00 PM CST December 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA- From model trains to decorated window panes, there was fun for all ages at the Boone County History and... More >>
2 days ago Sunday, December 16 2018 Dec 16, 2018 Sunday, December 16, 2018 6:12:00 PM CST December 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – After a life-threatening accident 17 years ago, a Columbia man is proving you never have to give up... More >>
2 days ago Sunday, December 16 2018 Dec 16, 2018 Sunday, December 16, 2018 12:46:00 PM CST December 16, 2018 in Sports
COLUMBIA - A University of Missouri assistant football coach was arrested Saturday on a warrant from Miller County after failing... More >>
2 days ago Sunday, December 16 2018 Dec 16, 2018 Sunday, December 16, 2018 10:12:00 AM CST December 16, 2018 in Sports
FULTON - Two people were arrested on various drug charges Sunday morning. According to a release, Police stopped a... More >>
3 days ago Sunday, December 16 2018 Dec 16, 2018 Sunday, December 16, 2018 7:08:00 AM CST December 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Missouri Symphony will play holiday music Sunday for the Symphony of Toys concert. Students in the Missouri... More >>
3 days ago Saturday, December 15 2018 Dec 15, 2018 Saturday, December 15, 2018 9:45:00 PM CST December 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - People gathered at Hickman High School on Saturday to celebrate holidays from several cultures. KOPN Community Radio... More >>
3 days ago Saturday, December 15 2018 Dec 15, 2018 Saturday, December 15, 2018 9:10:00 PM CST December 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia College had a special moment during the graduation ceremony Saturday to honor a student who died in... More >>
3 days ago Saturday, December 15 2018 Dec 15, 2018 Saturday, December 15, 2018 8:15:00 PM CST December 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Jefferson City Diocese confirmed Saturday three people were added to its list of clergy accused of... More >>
3 days ago Saturday, December 15 2018 Dec 15, 2018 Saturday, December 15, 2018 7:31:00 PM CST December 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Police made an arrest in connection to Saturday afternoon's shooting in the 3800 block of Aspen Heights... More >>
3 days ago Saturday, December 15 2018 Dec 15, 2018 Saturday, December 15, 2018 4:40:00 PM CST December 15, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 37°
9am 42°
10am 46°
11am 49°
12pm 52°