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Three charged with attempted murder of Laurel Bloomery couple

Three men previously arrested in North Carolina last year have recently been charged with attempted murder, kidnapping and a host of other criminal charges relating to home invasions and shootings that occurred in Johnson County in 2010 and 2011.
In March of 2010, Arvil and Margaret Clark of Sugarcreek Road in Laurel Bloomery opened their door to find two men claiming to be the police. Wearing shirts and badges that substantiated their claim, the Clarks complied. According to Johnson County Sheriff Mike Reece, the imposters used zip ties to handcuff the couple while they searched the home for drugs and money. At this time, the men took guns and medications, leaving the home with the couple still cuffed. According to Reece, it is believed one of these guns was used in a later incident. Reece said the group returned for a second time to the Clarks’ home but left when motion detectors were activated.
On a third occasion, Mr. Clark responded to a knock at his door and recognized one of the previous intruders. At that time, Clark fired a shot. He said the man fired a return shot and fled from the property. According to Reece, it was later discovered that personnel from Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem, North Carolina treated a patient for a gunshot wound in the same time period.
The intruders allegedly returned again for yet a fourth time. Twenty-four shots were fired into the bedroom. “The mattresses were riddled with gunshots. They intended to kill to get revenge,” said Reece. The Clarks were both injured during the incident.
In April of 2011, Larry Thomas Greer of Jefferson, North Carolina was charged with crimes associated with these home invasions. He was charged with aggravated burglary, three counts of aggravated assault, two counts of aggravated kidnapping, two counts of criminal impersonation and theft over $1,000.
According to Reece, investigators recently connected Chad N. Collins of Wilkesboro, NC, James Ray Hugus of Raleigh, NC, and Robert Lee Miller, Jr., of Champion, NC with these same crimes committed in Johnson County. They were arrested for similar crimes in Ashe County, NC. Hugus, no stranger to the penal system, was charged in 1993 for bank robberies involving 10 different banks. He was known as “The Bicycle Bandit,” as witnesses said he used a bike to flee the scene of the crimes.
Reece explained that information was received from one of the three charged and the pieces began to fall together. According to the sheriff, Johnson County investigators traced bullets from the gun used in the Clark shooting to a gun they found hidden in an attic in Raleigh, NC. “It’s the gun we believe they did the shooting with,” he said. Reece is awaiting information from ballistic testing. He added that two storage units were later found rented by one of the accused that held an array of police equipment, vests and shirts.
In addition to their charges in North Carolina, Collins, Hugus and Miller were charged with aggravated burglary, aggravated kidnapping, aggravated robbery, and attempted aggravated burglary, as well as two counts of attempted first-degree murder. Both Collins and Hugus were additionally charged with two counts of impersonation of a police officer, two counts of possession of a firearm and vandalism over $1,000.
Collins, Hugus and Miller remain in Ashe County Jail. Johnson County Sheriff’s Department will seek extradition for further prosecution in Tennessee.