Fourth suspect turns self in after newlywed shot in head during break-in

Published: Dec. 9, 2013 at 9:43 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 8, 2014 at 10:14 PM EST
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Khari Dewayne McClelland
Khari Dewayne McClelland
Tramel Devon Hart (Rowan Co. Jail)
Tramel Devon Hart (Rowan Co. Jail)

ROWAN COUNTY, NC (WBTV) - A Rowan County man is being held on a $5 million bond after deputies say a newlywed was shot in the head during a home break-in last week.

Khari Dewayne McClelland, 23, was arrested in the Newton-Conover area Monday afternoon, according to the Rowan County Sheriff's Office.  He was the third person arrested in the case.

Deputies say Marcus "Marco" Kauffman is hospitalized after he was shot in the head during a botched burglary at his home.

A post on the "Praying for Marco" facebook page says his neurosurgeon is pleased with his progress. However, there's a long road toward recovery. Kauffman is on a ventilator to help him breath and he's unable to speak.

McClelland was picked up by Rowan County Sheriff's Office Investigators, who transported him back to Rowan County for questioning and processing, deputies told WBTV.

He was served with warrants for Attempted Murder, Felony Breaking & Entering, Felony Larceny, and Felony Larceny of a Firearm.  He was indicted in court on Tuesday morning and was appointed an attorney.

Earlier Monday, investigators with the Sheriff's Office told WBTV that Kauffman may have been shot with his own gun. Investigators say they have not confirmed whether Kauffman's gun was used in the crime, but that it is "possible."

He is still in critical condition in the hospital. Friends are family are praying by his bedside daily.

Meanwhile two suspects appeared briefly in court Monday on charges relating to the burglary and shooting.

Jalend Turner was arrested Friday and charged with attempted murder. Another man, Michael Dwayne Teasley, is charged with accessory after the fact.

Bond for Turner is set at $3 million.  Bond for Teasley is $500,000.

Deputies say the fourth suspect,18-year-old Tramel Devon Hart, turned himself in at the Rowan Co. Magistrate's Office on Thursday evening and was charged with accessory after fact. His bond was set at $500,000.

Detectives say they located a suspect's car in Alexander County and identified McClelland as a suspect then.

According to arrest warrants issued for McClelland, officials believe he stole a laptop computer, a desktop computer, an Xbox gaming system, and a firearm.

The Rowan Sheriff's Investigators enlisted the help of the Statesville Police Department, and were able to recover a computer stolen from the break-in at the victim's residence, at 4270 Chenault Road in Cleveland.

Last Monday, Kauffman and his wife Maryanne were returning home from visiting family. The Kauffmans noticed the suspect vehicle parked near their home, and the vehicle appeared to be broken-down. Marcus dropped his wife off at a near-by friend's house, and returned to offer assistance.

When Kauffman returned, he discovered the suspects appeared to be removing items from his home, which included a computer - which investigators say has now been recovered.
Kauffman called 911, and during the call asked the suspects why they were taking his stuff.

During this conversation, Mr. Kauffman told the dispatcher that shots were being fired and the call was lost. Mr. Kauffman was found in his car with a very severe gunshot wound to his head.

The suspects fled the scene with the Kauffman's property. Marco Kauffman remains in the hospital fighting for his life. To read more about Marco, click here.

Family and friends say they're relieved police have identified the suspects.

Merritt Eaton, a friend of Kauffman since childhood, says "that makes me extremely happy. We are wanting our community to be back and safe, and for people to be able to feel like they can go out at night."

Both Eaton and Kauffman serve on the Scotch Irish Volunteer Fire Department. Fellow firefighters are asking for prayers. At the Cleveland Community Volunteer Fire Department, strangers have been stopping in to donate money for Kauffman's family.

Members who attend church with Kauffman at Cleveland Believer's Fellowship Church say it makes a difference that investigators are apparently close to solving case.

"We're just glad they finally found him and hope justice will be served" says Sarah Foster.

"We've been praying for the guy a lot. That God would somehow get through to him in this, and he wouldn't get away with it."

Church members say Kauffman and his wife were supposed to have left Wednesday with the church choir to sing and preach at a Florida prison. Instead, his friends and family are watching and praying for his recovery.

Anyone with information on this case is asked to contact Staff Sergeant Jason Owens (704) 216-8683 or 1st Lieutenant Chad Moose (704) 216-8687, at the Rowan County Sheriff's Office.

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