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Witness 911 Call: 'Stop Running Over That Guy'

Posted February 27, 2008
Updated February 28, 2008

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— A Raeford man surrendered to police Wednesday morning after being charged with murder in the death of a man who had tried to rob his wife.

Stanton Moretti Jr., 41, of 119 Raymond St., was charged with first-degree murder and was ordered held without bond at the Cumberland County Detention Center. Arrest documents cited previous assault charges to describe him as a danger to the public.

He was charged Monday with assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill and had been free on a $25,000 bond.

Moretti's wife, Anna Moretti, was outside Primo Pizza on Yadkin Road Friday night when Aaron McLeod approached her and tried to rob and stab her, police said. Anna Moretti called out to her husband, who came outside and fired two warning shots from a handgun he carried, police said.

McLeod fled on foot down Horseshoe Road, and Stanton Moretti got into his GMC Yukon, caught up to McLeod and struck him three times with his vehicle, police said.

Two men who called 911 to report McLeod being run over were clearly amazed to see the SUV drive over McLeod repeatedly.

"Oh, he's running over him again," one man said on the call.

"Stop running over that guy," they yelled, apparently out the window of their vehicle.

Investigators declined to say whether they found a knife on McLeod, but Stanton Moretti's attorney, Michael Boose, said a knife was found at the scene.

McLeod, 28, of 412 Horseshoe Road, died Monday at UNC Hospitals.

Stanton Moretti chased McLeod in order to subdue him, Boose said. Moretti had been assaulted in the past and the suspects got away, Boose said, and he didn't want that to happen again.

"He was chasing him. The guy wasn't stopping and either cut in front of the vehicle or was running off the road because he was able to be pursued on the road, and that's when Stan ran over him in the ditch," Boose said.

Anna Moretti suffered defensive wounds on her hands in the incident, Boose said.

Stanton Moretti has been "torn up" about the incident, Boose said. People that know Moretti, who owns Dog Pound Tattoos in Fayetteville, describe him as a big-hearted man who "doesn't have a vicious bone in his body," he said.

"Different times, different circumstances, (Moretti and McLeod) might have been co-workers. They might have shared a beer together before it was all done with," Boose said.

Moretti was arrested in September on charges of assaulting a female and misdemeanor child abuse.

According to court documents, he and his wife were yelling profanities at each other outside their house, and he admitted to a Hoke County deputy that he had rammed his Cadillac Escalade into the family's Chevrolet Suburban to keep his wife from leaving. The couple's 2-year-old son was in the Escalade at the time, according to court records.

Several misdemeanor charges against McLeod, including larceny and shoplifting, had been dismissed, according to a criminal records check.

Gilbert McLeod on Tuesday described his son as a man who didn't cause trouble. He said he thought his son approached Anna Moretti to ask for a cigarette and that he startled her.

358 Comments

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  • shoyaryt Feb 29, 2008

    "btw most people that say they would have,really wouldn't"

    You shouldn't apply your personal experience or beliefs to what others have lived... not going in to what I HAVE witnessed, experienced, suffered, accomplished; where I HAVE lived; work I HAVE done... I believe I can more than just dispute your claim, so according to you, I guess I'm considered more than "most people".

  • Common Sense Man Feb 28, 2008

    From the Fay paper:

    "Moretti once used a vehicle during a prior dispute, resulting in an assault charge, Boose said. He smashed his car into the back of another vehicle to keep his wife from driving it. She filed the charge against Moretti after the incident, Boose said. The couple had been arguing about her driving the car, Boose said."

    Real nice guy.

    "“I don’t know if there’s a proper procedure for once you run over someone,” Boose said."

    Lol, again, priceless.

  • Common Sense Man Feb 28, 2008

    "Stanton Moretti has been "torn up" about the incident, Boose said. People that know Moretti, who owns Dog Pound Tattoos in Fayetteville, describe him as a big-hearted man who "doesn't have a vicious bone in his body," he said.

    "Different times, different circumstances, (Moretti and McLeod) might have been co-workers. They might have shared a beer together before it was all done with," Boose said."

    This is why people hate defense attorneys. Keep putting that spin on it buddy. And a defense attorney named Boose? Priceless.

  • Common Sense Man Feb 28, 2008

    "abuse to his wife? they have been married for just over a year and they are still together, in case you haven't seen for yourself, he has taken her everywhere and given her things you would envy. He has babied her with materialistic things that you would love to have, abuse to her? i think not..."

    Lol, that might be the most idiotic comment I've ever read. Based on what you wrote you believe that as long as a couple is still together there is no abuse. And since the man buys things for the woman there is no abuse. Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight. Keep thinking that.

  • Redneck_Bob Feb 28, 2008

    I would have done this, I would have done that, I would have done somethng else. I would have, I would have I would have is nothing but I would have. NOBODY can say for sure what they would have UNTIL they are put in that same situation.

    btw most people that say they would have,really wouldn't

  • zeitghost Feb 28, 2008

    "He said he thought his son approached Anna Moretti to ask for a cigarette and that he startled her."

    Right, that's how she got those defensive wounds, from being 'startled'.

  • beachboater Feb 28, 2008

    It's not a good situation from any side. If he had done nothing and let the robber go, the robber would do it again, maybe stab someone to death. Letting the bad guy go is not a good solution.

    As far as protecting my family........if my wife called to me that someone had a knife and was attacking her, I would likely loose control. I think I would try to catch him on foot first, but if I couldn't catch him, the car is always an option. I don't think I would have run over him, but I might have "nudged" him into a ditch.

    A bad day for all concerned.

  • ratherbnnc Feb 28, 2008

    Ya know - if the police don't want to do their job - there has to be some form of justice other than putting the good/bad guy away.

    I think the Police did do their job and put him away!!

  • TheAdmiral Feb 28, 2008

    Ya know - if the police don't want to do their job - there has to be some form of justice other than putting the good/bad guy away.

    Now if he was being charged with whatever - ya know - oh well.

    As far as anything else is concerned. I believe he is innocent until proven guilty. My wife understands that if we are ever put into a situation, and someone has a knife to her throat - that the gun makes a better remover of the threat than the truck.

  • shoyaryt Feb 28, 2008

    I would defend my family at the maximum that MATCHED the threat against my family. Mr. Moretti's family was no longer threatened when the deceased ran off...

    Posters have agreed that they would defend their families if they were threatened or attacked; I'm no different. If I was armed and I discovered someone in my home or attacking my loved one, I also would fire without even thinking about the law.

    I would probably even pursue him in my vehicle to try to stop him at gunpoint.

    But I would NOT... drive over him with my vehicle, back the vehicle over him and drive over him again.

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