PORTSMOUTH, Va. — Charges were dropped Wednesday against Antwann Jacque Gore, one of two men arrested in connection to a deadly quadruple shooting in Portsmouth back in June.
The judge determined that there wasn't enough probable cause to continue with the case.
Gore faced four counts of aggravated homicide for a shooting that happened June 7 on Maple Avenue.
He was considered to be on the run in the aftermath but was taken into custody on September 27.
Responding officers found three people dead at the scene. A fourth victim died at the hospital days later. The victims are:
- 30-year-old Georgio Davonta Lee
- 37-year-old Oleisha Deanna Mears
- 34-year-old Ashley Merricks
- 66-year-old Samuel Jones
Raymond Lee Gore, a relative of Antwann, was also charged with four counts of aggravated murder in connection to this shooting.
He also faces gun and assault charges, and he's set to appear in court on February 1, 2023, according to court records.
Gore's cousin, Keyonna, said the family is relieved Gore is coming home.
“God is good. It was already written. Because I knew and the judge knew, too," Keyonna said. “It’s been very hard. It’s been very hard on his daughter. It’s been very hard on us. Because we knew he didn’t do anything like that and for him to be wrongfully accused and sat in jail, all over the news and everything. That was wrong. So I think they owe him an apology.”
A Portsmouth police detective testified that officers found Merricks dead just inside the front door; Mears was dead inside a bedroom closet; Lee was slumped in bed, dead, with a comforter still on top of him. Investigators found Jones alive and hurt at the top of the stairs. He died from his injuries a few days later.
Jones told officers at the scene that two men he didn't recognize came in shooting, according to the detective's testimony.
Gore’s attorney, Don Scott, said Gore isn't the killer.
“We all care, all of us care about making sure that the public is safe and ensure we get the right persons," Scott said. "If the wrong person is still out there, they have some more investigating to do.”
The prosecution had one eyewitness who the defense successfully argued was unreliable and a “professional snitch.”
Michael Cantey, an inmate at the Chesapeake Correctional Facility, testified he saw Antwann Gore and his relative Raymond Gore enter the home before the shooting.
Scott questioned if Cantey was set to receive bond in exchange for his testimony.
“There was no evidence presented other than that of a 20-time loser who cut a deal in exchange for his testimony just this morning," Scott said. "That’s sad."
Gore's other attorney Warren Kozak added: "Obviously a 20-time convicted felon has no credibility. He cut a separate deal this morning and was not going to testify. Clearly, clearly, Mr. Gore is innocent. The judge, I'm sure, made a tough decision but the right decision."