Cabarrus County authorities have arrested a man, and were looking for another suspect, in a weekend shooting at a Interstate 85 rest stop that left a father of four paralyzed from the waist down.
Darren Tyron Manuel, 26, of Charlotte, was charged with assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury and attempted robbery with a dangerous weapon. He was jailed without bail pending a Dec. 17 court appearance.
He faces at least 26 years in prison, reports WBTV, the Observer’s media partner.
Greg McKee, 43, was shot after he and his family stopped Saturday at a rest area on southbound I-85 near Dale Earnhardt Boulevard and Exit 60. McKee went inside a restroom while his family waited in the car, police said.
As he washed his hands, McKee said two men approached him. They stood on each side of him, and one of the men showed a gun.
As McKee ran from the restroom, he was shot in the back, the Associated Press reported. The two men then ran away.
Investigators said they believe surveillance video captured one of the suspects.
Manuel was arrested in Charlotte Tuesday.
Authorities were still searching Wednesday for a second suspect, Cabarrus County Sheriff Brad Riley told WBTV.
“There are just bad folks out there who have bad intentions and sometimes they prey upon good citizens,” Riley told the station. “They find the weakest links, rest areas, places they can gravitate to to commit their crimes. I think that’s a case of what happened here.”
McKee’s wife, Terrie McKee, told WBTV that “we’re very appreciative of all the hard work that the Cabarrus County Sheriff’s Department has done for this case, but we are especially appreciative of the community being so diligent and sharing and looking out for this guy.
“I think people are just sick of this kind of crime, the randomness of this crime,” she said. “There needs to be something done about it, but ultimately the man who did this needs to find Jesus in his life so they’ll just turn away from this kind of lifestyle.”
Court records show Manuel was released from prison in October after serving five years for robbery with a dangerous weapon. He is still on probation for that offense.
He was released from prison in 2008 after serving six months for larceny of a motor vehicle.
In 2007, he was found guilty of disorderly conduct, communicating threats and second-degree trespass, all misdemeanors.
In 2010, charges of attempted first-degree murder and assault with a deadly with intent to kill inflicting serious injury were dismissed. Details of those charges weren’t available Wednesday.
Staff Researcher Maria David and the Associated Press contributed.