Putnam County Man Arrested for Attempted Murder

HURRICANE, WV (WOWK) - A Putnam County man was arrested on warrants for two counts of attempted murder.

The Putnam County Sheriff's Department says that at around 7 PM on Friday, May 11th, 2018, Joey Rhodes and Sue Holstine drove a gold Nissan Maxima to a home on Sycamore Road in Hurricane, WV to pick up Rhodes's children from their mother, Leona Hanger.  

PCSD says there was a verbal argument over custody and Child Protective Services involvement. 

Rhodes was backing out of the driveway and Holstine was sitting in the front passenger seat.

As they were trying to leave, Hanger's boyfriend, Thomas Jacob Sowards, who also resides at the home, fired three rounds from a handgun into the vehicle.  Both Mr. Rhodes and Ms. Holstine saw the gun and heard the shots.

Rhodes and Holstine drove to Hurricane Police Department and contacted Putnam County Dispatch to report the incident.

Putnam County Sheriff Steve Deweese says he observed three bullet holes in the vehicle.  One entered the front passenger side door and entered the seat where Holstine was sitting.  The second one entered the rear passenger side door and struck the driver's seat where Rhodes was sitting.  There was a third bullet hole at the top of the rear passenger side wheel well.

Sowards was arrested on two counts of attempted murder.


Mr. Sowards fled the residence prior to law enforcement arrival.

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