Hopkins shooting case tops upcoming Superior docket


By Adam Orr - [email protected]



JEFFERSON-The case of a former Ashe County Sheriff’s Deputy charged with murder tops the next session of Superior Court scheduled for early next month.

Joshua Franklin “Hoppy” Hopkins is scheduled to appear on Feb. 6.

Hopkins was charged with second degree murder and assault with a deadly weapon intent to kill inflicting serious bodily injury in the shooting death of 62-year-old Dallas Shatley of Crumpler.

Shatley, 62, was shot by Ashe County Sheriff’s Office deputies on July 8, 2015, after he allegedly confronted the officers who were responding to a disturbance. The incident was reported around 10 p.m. in Crumpler on Shatley Road, just off of Highway 16.

According to previous statements by former Ashe County Sheriff James Williams, a deputy was dragged by a vehicle driven by Shatley and shots were fired.

The ACSO said later that Deputies Christopher Roten, Joshua Hopkins and Brandon Miller had been involved in the incident, but the agency declined to say which of the deputies had allegedly been dragged prior to the shooting. The three deputies were placed on administrative leave, but were reinstated the week of Aug. 17, 2015.

A postmortem toxilogic analysis of Dallas Arthur Shatley, 62, detected elevated levels of ethanol – 150 mg/dl – in tissue taken from Shatley’s eye. That information comes from reports delivered to the Jefferson Post from the N.C. Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

Ethanol is the active agent in beer, wine, vodka, whiskey, rum and other liquors. Ethanol is the single most important substance of abuse in the United States, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Shatley’s ethanol reading exceeded the legal limit of intoxication, which is 80 mg/dl, levels frequently associated with a loss of manual dexterity and with sedation, according to the Mayo Clinic. Toxic concentration, however, is dependent upon individual usage history.

In Sept. 2015, District Attorney Tom Horner announced that he would no longer be involved in the case due to his close relationship with the Shatley family. The case was then handed over to District Attorney Garry Frank of Davie and Davidson counties.

It is unclear at this time if Hopkins’ defense team will try to file a motion for a change of venue in the case, which is not uncommon in high profile cases such as this one.

An Ashe County man at the center of a manhunt in February and March of 2016 is also scheduled to be in superior court.

Skylar Alexander Branson, 19, was hit with a litany of charges, including felonious restraint, assault by pointing a gun and felony fleeing or eluding arrest with a motor vehicle, after he allegedly led Ashe County Sheriff’s Office personnel on a car chase on Feb. 26, 2016.

That pursuit ended near the Tennessee line, according to Williams, after Branson bailed out of his car and headed into the mountains on foot. Branson’s arrest came at a home in Clifton on Hardin Gilley Road just off NC-88 around 10 p.m. on March 8, after a short standoff.

Branson was charged with, among others, reckless driving to endanger, fail to heed light or siren, resisting public officer, communicating threats, possession of marijuana >1/2 to 1 1/2 oz, possession of a stolen firearm and hit and run leaving the scene of property damage.

Other cases scheduled to be heard Feb. 6 include:

Derek Chad Anderson: resisting public officer, habitual larceny

Jody Chad Blevins: obtain property false pretense

Adam Michael Boelke: indecent liberties with child, indecent liberties with child

Brandon Michae Calhoun: assault on a female, assault on a child under 12, resisting public officer, habitual felon, assault by strangulation, interfere emerg communication, communicating threats

Billy Joe Combs: sell/deliver sch ii cs, eight counts trafficking, opium or heroin, sell/deliver sch ii cs, pwimsd sch ii cs

Dakota Scott Combs: false bomb report public bldg

Chaysen Blake Conner: driving while impaired, drive after consuming < 21

Justin Bradle Critcher: simple possess sch vi cs (m)

Robert Michael Elliott: obtain property false pretense

Jamie Richard Ferguson: three counts traffick in methamphetamine, conspire traffic methamphetami

Jessie Colt Greer: obtain property false pretense

Thomas Larry Greer: traffick in methamphetamine, conspire traffic methamphetami

Danny Mack Horton: awdwikisi

Joseph Chad Jones: poss stolen goods/prop (f)

James Allen Jordan: evidentiary hearing

Melissa Hope Love: driving while impaired, give/lend/borrow lic plate

Jerry Lee Martin: injury to personal property, breaking and or entering (f), larceny after break/enter, poss stolen goods/prop (f), break or enter a motor vehicle, felony larceny, possession of firearm by felon

Mary Bare McCraw: 10 counts trafficking, opium or heroin, sell/deliver sch iii cs, pwimsd sch iii cs

Jacob Jackson McKiddy: driving while impaired

Tisha J McPeak: stat rape of child by adult, contributing del of juvenile, stat sex off w/child by adult

Kelly Wayne Miller: assault with a deadly weapon, injury to personal property

William Gerald Price: motion

Joshua David Reber: four counts rape of a child, six counts sexual offense with a child

Roger Wayne Roush: eight counts trafficking, opium or heroin, sell/deliver sch ii cs, pwimsd sch ii cs, maintn veh/dwell/place cs (f)

Allen William Shepherd: assault on a female, communicating threats, assault by strangulation, second degree force sex off, second degree kidnapping, felonious restraint

Timothy Ray Watson: possess methamphetamine

Kacha Lane Wood: sell methamphetamine, deliver methamphetamine, pwimsd methamphetamine

Other cases scheduled to be heard in superior court beginning Feb. 6, include:

Anthony Shane Anderson: misdemeanor probation viol, misdemeanor probation viol, dwlr aft impaired rev notice, misdemeanor larceny, assault on a female, three counts dwlr impaired rev

Aaron Banks Dixon: eight counts first degree sexual offense, two counts second deg sex exploit minor

Terri Francis Dula: smi failure to appear on felony, habitual felon

Dean Eldreth Jr: second degree rape, second degree sexual offense

Roy Lee Ellison Jr: assault govt official/emply, misdemeanor child abuse, awdw government official, break/enter place of worship

Anthony Dusti Graybeal: burn church/religious bldg, break/enter place of worship, larceny after break/enter

Harold G Greer: possess methamphetamine, possess drug paraphernalia, resisting public officer, poss stolen goods/prop (m)

Scotty Lee Severt: larceny defeat anti-theft dev, poss stolen goods/prop (f), breaking and or entering (f), habitual felon

Terri Frances Smith: trafficking, opium or heroin

David Edwin Waln: petition for termination of se, temination sex offender regist

Kacha Lane Wood: felony conspiracy, poss/distribute meth precursor, possess methamphetamine

Reach Adam Orr at 336-489-3058.

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By Adam Orr

[email protected]

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