Roanoke shooting avoidable, says prior victim
Angela Paschal said if she had pressed charges in 2000, Thursday's shooting may not have happened.
By Amanda Codispoti | The Roanoke Times
Angela Paschal never imagined that her boyfriend would shoot her, even in the minute before he pulled out the gun as they argued.
He fired the .40-caliber pistol twice, striking her once in her right leg, she said.
Roanoke police charged Lamar Brown with malicious wounding in that shooting nine years ago, but the charge was dropped because Paschal decided not to prosecute.
"I thought he was worth a second chance," she said.
On Friday, Paschal said she regrets that decision.
Brown, 36, is now wanted by police in connection with another shooting Thursday that injured a woman outside Central Baptist Church in Northwest Roanoke.
Central Baptist's pastor, the Rev. Joseph Keaton, said the woman is a secretary at the church and is Brown's ex-girlfriend.
Keaton declined to identify the woman. Police have not released the victim's name either, because they didn't have permission from her to do so, Capt. Curtis Davis said.
The shooting happened about noon as the woman was in her car leaving the church in the 1500 block of Staunton Avenue Northwest.
She was struck in the shoulder and drove herself to Fire Station No. 9, one mile away on 24th Street. From there she was taken to Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital. Her condition is not known.
News of Thursday's shooting immediately reminded Paschal of her own experience with Brown in 2000, she said.
"I feel awful -- I mean awful -- that he shot her, because had I went to court, I'm sure he'd still be locked up," she said. "I took a second chance on him."
She and Brown had already broken up but were still living together on Hanover Avenue Northwest that January in 2000 when she was shot, Paschal said.
She said that on that afternoon, he was upset about the breakup and paced their bedroom, crying. Then he pulled out the gun.
"My world started going in slow motion," she said.
Paschal heard the gun fire, and then felt the bullet hit the lower part of her leg. She fell to the floor, and Brown fired again, but the bullet missed her, she said.
"He wasn't himself," she said, describing Brown as a father figure to her children.
Brown fled to Philadelphia after the 2000 shooting and was arrested when he came back to Roanoke a few weeks later.
He was also charged at that time with using a firearm in commission of a malicious wounding and unlawful possession of a firearm. Those charges were also dropped.
Paschal has fully recovered from her injuries.
In the years since the shooting, Brown and Paschal have kept in touch, Paschal said. Thursday, after the most recent shooting, Paschal said Brown called her, wanting a ride to Philadelphia.
"He says he didn't do it," she said.
Anyone with information about Brown's whereabouts should call 911. He may be armed, police said.