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Magistrate lauded for actions at chaotic Franklinton shooting scene

Posted September 23, 2010

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— A Franklin County magistrate helped avert numerous injuries Monday after a wounded driver plowed into a gas pump and set off a fireball, police and witnesses said.

Jesse Montague Jr., 27, was shot in the back while driving along Sterling Street, and his car then crashed into a pump at a nearby Exxon gas station, sparking an explosion and a 10-foot fireball.

Video from the station's security camera shows the out-of-control car running over the pump and then hitting a pickup truck parked at the station with a woman inside. Meanwhile, about a dozen bystanders scrambled for cover inside the station's convenience store.

Magistrate Jason Cox was working late in his office across the street from the Exxon station when he heard the gunshots and called 911. He then rushed to the station when he saw the gas pump explode.

"It just happened to be a good opportunity to take action," said Cox, a former firefighter. "There was a lot of heat. There were a few people standing there, kind of watching the flames."

He quickly found the station's emergency shut-off valve and cut the flow of gasoline to the pump to help contain the flames before the local fire department arrived.

"I just found my way around the heat and went to the building and found the cut-off and got it shut off," he said.

Franklinton gas station explosion Magistrate lauded for actions at chaotic Franklinton shooting scene

The explosion caused an estimated $30,000 in damage to the gas station.

Cox then returned to Montague's car and pulled him from the vehicle.

"I heard some people yelling in the parking lot for the victim of the gunshots to get out of the car," he said.

Montague died of the gunshot wound, but no one else was injured in the incident.

Cox said he just did what his instincts told him to do.

"There are plenty of other people, I'm sure, who would have been passing by and done the same thing," he said.

Virginia State Police arrested Rashawn "May May" Arrington, 23, late Tuesday in Southampton County after Franklinton police and North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation agents tracked him down through his cell phone calls.

Police say Arrington fired several shots at Montague on Monday. They knew each other and had argued in the past, investigators said.

Arrington is charged with first-degree murder in the case. He made no statements Thursday morning during a brief court appearance.

Montague's death is the first homicide in Franklinton in 18 years.

23 Comments

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  • iworkandpaytaxes Sep 24, 4:18 p.m.

    "The police shooting was investigated and ruled "self defense". No gun and the man was on his property. Shot and killed on his porch. Didn't hear much about it huh? Funny huh?" imyourhighness69

    I'll tell you what's really funny, here is an article about the heroic actions of a magistrate and you have turned it into a senseless rant about police 15 years ago, thats funny.
    anitov
    September 24, 2010 12:58 p.m.
     Report abuse

    If he was so heroic he would get the dope deals done right outside his window. It takes fire to look out it? You people are clueless on Funky town.

  • Coach K is still GREAT Sep 24, 3:05 p.m.

    Regardless of what kind of life someone has lived, no one deserves to be murdered. A lawyer, a mother, a son, a doctor, high school drop out, gang member, drug dealer... no one deserves it. Receiving the death penalty is one thing b/c you're judged by your so called peers but to take someone's life is wrong. People get angry and decide to murder, what does that prove? Nothing, one family grieves and the other family spends gas and time visiting the other one in prison.
    KiKi74
    GOLO member since September 24, 2010

    If you play with fire... you're going to get burned... I wonder if this was somehow gang related or drug releated... I'm sure it was one or the other. Maybe both...

  • Firegal Sep 24, 2:08 p.m.

    kikki, I agree, I think some people are too tied up in conspiracies and just cant believe there is a such thing as good news. Its sad a life was lost but look at how many were possibly saved

  • thepeopleschamp Sep 24, 12:58 p.m.

    "The police shooting was investigated and ruled "self defense". No gun and the man was on his property. Shot and killed on his porch. Didn't hear much about it huh? Funny huh?" imyourhighness69

    I'll tell you what's really funny, here is an article about the heroic actions of a magistrate and you have turned it into a senseless rant about police 15 years ago, thats funny.

  • KiKi74 Sep 24, 11:24 a.m.

    Regardless of what kind of life someone has lived, no one deserves to be murdered. A lawyer, a mother, a son, a doctor, high school drop out, gang member, drug dealer... no one deserves it. Receiving the death penalty is one thing b/c you're judged by your so called peers but to take someone's life is wrong. People get angry and decide to murder, what does that prove? Nothing, one family grieves and the other family spends gas and time visiting the other one in prison.

  • Firegal Sep 24, 11:21 a.m.

    yourhighness,

    If its the police shoot I am thinking about, then you need to do more research. The man was on his front porch drunk and went for a shotgun. A threat to the officer was visible and the threat was neutralized. The officer went home to his family. end of story... It may sound harsh, but its reality.

  • iworkandpaytaxes Sep 24, 10:13 a.m.

    "I know the cops used to get paid off in the Late 90's for drugs. There was a homicide within the past 18 years, but it involved a cop trying to "defend himself". imyourhighness69

    So you know about "payoffs" and a "homicide", what did you do about it?
    anitov
    September 24, 2010 8:54 a.m.
     Report abuse

    Nothing. Dope money was good in the 90's. How do you think I know about the payoffs? A good guess? The police shooting was investigated and ruled "self defense". No gun and the man was on his property. Shot and killed on his porch. Didn't hear much about it huh? Funny huh?

  • snickers27588 Sep 24, 9:41 a.m.

    First of all "imyourhighness69" You ain't seen nothin till you lived in Bunn.
    Second of all "anitov" the late 90's are alive and well. Anyone who reports this information is discounted as having mental problems, arrested, given a sentence and after surviving all that has to leave the area asap. The "Good ol By" network is alive and well from top to bottom in that county. And before you ask, when the state police are asked to help they'll tell you they only come in when the local police can't handle it. Been there, Done that!

  • Chuck U Farley Sep 24, 9:33 a.m.

    "Don't have as much sympathy for the victim as the others. He is probably had the life style that got him killed. Don't know him and this is just my common sense opinion."

    I think you mean "uninformed opinion" rather than common sense. You don't know this person and really shouldn't make comments like that about a murder victim.

    I rarely agree with Rev. RB on anything, but I've got to hand it to her for making just about the only appropriate comment on this subject.

  • braddavis Sep 24, 9:33 a.m.

    May May is going to have a bad day day...........

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