Prosecutors Cite Lack of Evidence in Cravens' Release

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BOONE COUNTY - Boone County prosecutors said they dropped the case against Eric Cravens after hitting a roadblock in their investigation of a gang-related shooting outside a downtown bar.

Three people were injured June 15, and Cravens was arrested nine days later.

Prosecuting Attorney Tracy Gonzalez said individuals believed to have information about the shooting are not coming forward or being cooperative.

The 20-year-old Cravens was initially charged with three counts of first degree assault and one count of armed criminal action in connection with the shooting outside Nash Vegas bar.

Cravens' defense attorney, Jennifer Bukowsky, said Cravens was in downtown Columbia the night of the shooting, but he left the area with his sister well before the shots were fired.

She said she has witnesses that provide Cravens with an alibi and surveillance footage from Break Time gas station and Taco Bell both provided information to support that.

Bukowsky said Cravens and his sister went to Break Time gas station on Nebraska Avenue. She said surveillance footage shows Cravens in a car that exited the parking lot at 12:17 a.m., and police dispatch received the call about shots being fired at 12:26 a.m. Bukowsky said the same car, without Cravens, was recorded in surveillance footage at the Taco Bell drive-through off Clark Lane at 12:29 a.m. Bukowsky said Cravens' sister took him home between the two stops.

"We were able to put together the timeline of events showing that he was not downtown at the time of the shots were fired. He was at home five miles away," Bukowsky said. 

Cravens' family asked her to investigate, she said.

"His family is overjoyed," Bukowsky said. "It's a very stressful ordeal that they have been through."

Gonzalez said that this is still an ongoing investigation.  

"There is no question that three individuals were shot on June the 15th," Gonzalez said. "Individuals are responsible for that. We continue to investigate in order to see justice in this matter."