Police still looking for shooting suspect

Tuesday, August 4, 2009 | 12:01 a.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — Police are looking for a suspect in a Friday shooting after releasing him from custody Friday night due to a lack of evidence.

As of Monday evening, police were still searching for William Darnell McNeary, 24, who is wanted on suspicion of first-degree assault and armed criminal action with a $200,000 bond, according to a news release from the Columbia Police Department.

McNeary is suspected of being involved in the Friday afternoon shooting of a 15-year-old male on Benton Road near its intersection with Garth Avenue. The teen was wounded in the hand and leg, but the wounds were not considered life threatening.

Kayla Bennett, who said she is the sister of the victim, said Monday that the victim was still in the hospital but is able to walk.

According to the police news release issued Saturday, the victim was walking eastbound on Benton at 3:30 p.m. Friday when McNeary, who was driving a black truck, approached him. Police say McNeary pulled alongside the victim and fired three shots before fleeing the area.

Police Department spokeswoman Officer Jessie Haden said McNeary came to the police station voluntarily and denied all involvement. She said the victim was in surgery at that time and was “not in a position to talk to us” about the identity of the shooter. She said McNeary was not arrested.

“We didn’t have enough to go on and hold Mr. McNeary,” Haden said.

After the victim recovered from surgery, he was able to positively identify McNeary out of a photo lineup, Haden said.

According to the release, investigators later recovered McNeary’s truck and found shell casings inside.

According to Missouri Casenet, McNeary was charged with unlawful use of a weapon in 2007.

McNeary is approximately 6 feet tall and approximately 250 pounds, and should be considered armed and dangerous, police said.

Police are asking anyone with additional information about McNeary’s whereabouts to call the department at 874-7652, or to contact Crimestoppers at 875-TIPS or

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