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Reward offered for murder suspect’s capture

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SMITHFIELD — Authorities are offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to a convenience store murder suspect’s arrest, the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office announced Friday.

Deputies are seeking information on the whereabouts of John Wesley Pettiway III. Pettiway is the third suspect in the Nov. 14 robbery and killing at the Scotchman convenience store on N.C. 210 in the McGee’s Crossroads community near Benson.

Pettiway, 21, from Selma, is charged with murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon and felony conspiracy.

Two other suspects are being held without bond in the Johnston County Detention Center.

Nineteen-year-old Manuel Jamie Patterson of Kenly was arrested Nov. 20 in Fayetteville. He’s accused in the Nov. 12 robbery of the Safeway/Reedy Creak Gas and Grocery at 9891 N.C. 210, Four Oaks.

While in the Johnston County Detention Center, Patterson was charged in the Scotchman murder and robbery. Patterson is charged with murder, two felony counts of robbery with a dangerous weapon and two counts of felony conspiracy.

On Thursday, 19-year-old Bobby Gene McLean Jr. from the Selma-Kenly area, surrendered himself at the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office. McLean was charged with murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon, felony conspiracy and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon in connection with the Scotchman case.

Multiple news outlets have reported that 23-year-old Joseph Shane Bowling of Angier was shot and killed while protecting his mother, who is a Scotchman employee.

“We can only confirm Bowling was killed,” said Capt. Jeff Caldwell of the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office.

Investigators have not said which suspect is believed to have pulled the trigger. Under the felony murder rule, anyone participating in a felony crime such as robbery can be convicted of first-degree murder when a homicide occurs during the commission of the felony.

Anyone with information on Pettiway’s whereabouts is asked to call the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office at 919-989-5000.

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