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Shooting of Marine Reservist to Go Before Grand Jury

Posted February 21, 2007
Updated February 22, 2007

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— A grand jury could decide as soon as Monday whether anyone will be indicted in a Fayetteville shooting that put a Marine into a coma four months ago.
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Marine reservist John Lake III was shot in the head in a parking lot on Bragg Boulevard on Oct. 16. He remains hospitalized in a coma.

The lone suspect in the shooting is Steve Statisky, a former Fayetteville city councilman and former member of the Cumberland County ABC Board.

Campbell University law professor William Woodruff told WRAL that he’s unfamiliar with the Satisky case. However, he said he's not surprised that four months have passed with no criminal charges.

"Most of the time, I think we can say when justice is rushed, justice is likely to be perverted,” Woodruff said.

In light of the Duke lacrosse case, which has led to ethics complaints against Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong, prosecutors could be treading more carefully, Woodruff said.

“Would be more particular, would exercise more caution rather than less,” he said.

It’s not clear if Lake’s current medical condition has hindered the investigation into his shooting.

"There may perhaps be additional forensics evidence available if the victim is dead through an autopsy and that sort of thing that you wouldn't have with a victim in a coma,” Woodruff said.

Satisky has kept a low profile during the past four months. His pawn shop in downtown Fayetteville has been closed most days. Under advice of his attorney, he has declined to comment on the case.

Fayetteville police officials referred all questions about the shooting to District Attorney Ed Grannis, who was unavailable for comment. Interim police chief Tom Bergamine told WRAL that Grannis met with officers about the case last week.
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