Middletown murder case involving alleged homeless camp theft sent to grand jury

Bond was set at $1 million Monday in Middletown Municipal Court for Jason Halcomb charged with murder for allegedly fatally shooting William Riley Friday night in Middletown. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF
Bond was set at $1 million Monday in Middletown Municipal Court for Jason Halcomb charged with murder for allegedly fatally shooting William Riley Friday night in Middletown. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

A grand jury will consider the case of a Middletown man charged with fatally shooting a man on May 15.

Jason Halcomb, 40, is charged with murder in the death of William Ray Riley, 28, shortly after 9 p.m. on Curtis Street.

He was in Middletown Municipal Court on Tuesday for a preliminary hearing. Judge James Sherron found sufficient evidence to bind the case over to a grand jury.

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Halcomb is being held in lieu of a $1 million bond.

According to Middletown police, they received a call that Halcomb had allegedly shot someone in the 400 block of Curtis Street at approximately 9:09 p.m. Riley was transported to an area hospital, where he died.

Police said a theft allegedly led to the shooting. A group of homeless people had gathered on Curtis Street when Halcomb allegedly stole some property from a female. Riley came to her defense and was killed by Halcomb, according to police.

A woman called 911 screaming that Riley “had been shot in the side … he’s not breathing.”

The caller identified Halcomb as the shooter and gave a description of what he was wearing.

“Jason shot Will,” she screamed to people in the background.

Halcomb was found by officers the next morning at a Church Street residence and taken into custody without incident. The gun used in the shooting was also recovered, according to police.

When interviewed by detectives, Halcomb admitted to shooting Riley, according to court documents.

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