Victims Of Lookout Valley Massacre Shot Multiple Times By 2 Gunmen; Lone 16-Year-Old Survivor Heard One Say, "Make Sure They're All Dead"; Victims Identified

Thursday, April 10, 2014
Derek Morse
Derek Morse

Three victims of a massacre in Lookout Valley on Wednesday night were each shot multiple times by two gunmen, authorities said.

The lone 16-year-old survivor said he heard one of the shooters say to the other, "Make sure they are all dead."

The victims were identified as John F. Lang, 53; Caleb N. Boozer, 29, and Jon E. Morris, 24.

One victim was found sitting in a chair and another appeared to be trying to crawl under the rear of a motor home. The third dead man was in nearby woods. One of the shots to the man in the chair was to the left side of the head.

The 16-year-old said he was hit by one shot and he fled to his nearby home. Officers found him lying at his doorstep.

He later was able to pick 19-year-old Derek M. Morse out of a lineup as one of the shooters.

Morse, of 3443 McNabb Way, has been charged in the case. A warrant was obtained and around 4:30 a.m. he was located and arrested at a residence off  Elder Mountain Road. 

He was charged with attempted criminal homicide.  Additional warrants will be filed on Morse charging him with three counts of criminal homicide as a result of the shooting incident, it was stated.

Sheriff Jim Hammond, at an afternoon press conference, said, "We have some pretty significant leads" on additional suspects.

He indicated that a black Hyundai that was believed to have been driven from the scene had been located by officers.

He said it was "not a random" shooting and that the parties involved apparently knew one another.

The sheriff's office got the shooting call at 7:10 p.m.

Numerous cartridge cases were found in the street in front of a motor home at 4504 Kellys Ferry Road.

A number of shots were fired as some people were sitting around outside near a group of campers and RVs.

The location is a short road up a steep hill.

Kelly's Ferry Road veers off Cummings Highway past the Highway Patrol Station.

 

 


PHOTOS: Swearing In Ceremony At Convention Center

County officials were sworn in during ceremonies Tuesday morning at the Convention Center (click for more)

Woman's Body Found In River Was Latasha Nichols

Family members say the woman's body found in the Hiwassee River was that of 34-year-old Latasha Nichols. She was reported missing last month. The family said DNA testing was conclusive that the body was hers. Family members say they want to know what caused her death. The viewing will be Wednesday from 4:30 to 7 p.m. at Jim Rush Funeral Homes in Cleveland. The ... (click for more)

Decimating The Chattanooga Public Library

Corinne Hill claims that the library is just undergoing a normal weeding process for eliminating books.  She has bragged that she's responsible for the elimination of over 100,000 books - with more to go. "Normal" weeding is not rampant throwing away.  Yes, books go to the Friends for their sale - where they get $2 for a $75 book and thousands wind up being recycled ... (click for more)

The Many Lessons I Learned From Helen McDonald Exum

Helen McDonald Exum was my friend and mentor. As I think of her passing I can only imagine the celebration that is happening in heaven as the news of her arrival is being told. I am sure that there is a party that not only has she organized but that there is not a detail that has been left to chance. I am sure that it is the grandest of events, for you see, she has been planing ... (click for more)

Fast-Starting Vols Gear Up For Another Mobile QB

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – It’s a new week for Tennessee’s football team, but the challenge that awaits in Neyland Stadium on Saturday afternoon will be a familiar reminder of the one the Volunteers just completed. The Volunteers have a short week to prepare for Arkansas State, a team much like Utah State, which relies heavily on a dual-threat quarterback and a physical front line. ... (click for more)

Chris O'Brien And Andres Santiago Named To Southern League's Weekly Honors

Tuesday, the Southern League announced that Chattanooga Lookouts’ catcher Chris O’Brien has been named Southern League Player of the Week and pitcher Andres Santiago was named the Southern League Pitcher of the Week for the period of August 25-September 1.  O’Brien is the fourth Chattanooga Lookouts’ position player to earn a weekly accolade from the league this season while ... (click for more)