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Eight Suspects Charged In Caldwell County Kidnapping Case (Updated With More Details, 1:15 P.m., 10/27/21)
Top Row, L-R: Anthony Scott Bumgarner, Elka Mckenna James, Bobby Dean Bowlin, Devan Alan Souther. Bottom Row, L-R: Tabitha Renee Bumgarner, Tristan Douglas Coffey, Adam Solis Hernandez, Hunter Dean Aungst

Eight Suspects Charged In Caldwell County Kidnapping Case (Updated with more details, 1:15 p.m., 10/27/21)

36-year-old Anthony Scott Bumgarner, 20-year-old Elka Mckenna James, 50-year-old Bobby Dean Bowlin, 18-year-old Devan Alan Souther, and 36-year-old Tabitha Renee Bumgarner, all of the same Joplin Road, Hudson address, 22-year-old Tristan Douglas Coffey of Smokey Creek Road in Lenoir, 23-year-old Adam Solis Hernandez of U.S. 64 in Morganton, and 20-year-old Hunter Dean Aungst of Hatteras, N.C. were all arrested Tuesday (October 26) by Caldwell County Sheriff’s Officers. All eight suspects are charged with felony first-degree kidnapping. Anthony Bumgarner, James, Bowlin, and Ungst are additionally charged with felony counts of attempted first-degree murder and assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury.

Tuesday at 8:55 a.m. Deputies with Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office responded to the Emergency Room at Caldwell Memorial Hospital after receiving a call from Hospital Staff that a shooting victim was dropped off at the Emergency Room. The victim of the shooting, a 24-year-old Hickory man, suffered two gunshot wounds to his torso. The man reported that earlier in the morning he and his girlfriend were at a residence of an acquaintance and a group of individuals assaulted him and his girlfriend. The suspects allegedly bound and blindfolded them.

The victim added that several of the individuals placed him and his girlfriend into a vehicle and transported them to another location where he and his girlfriend were placed on the ground. He indicated that the individuals fired multiple shots at him and his girlfriend. He was hit with gunfire but his girlfriend was not. The man was later flown to Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem for additional treatment and his condition was last reported to be stable.

The victim’s girlfriend corroborated his account of the events. She said after the incident they flagged down a vehicle to take them to the hospital. Investigators learned that the location of the incident was an address on Joplin Road in Hudson. Investigators were also able to identify an abandoned property on Hood’s Creek Road as the scene of the shooting. Investigators found items on the abandoned property that confirmed the victim’s statements.
Deputies served a search warrant at the Joplin Road address and detained all of the individuals on the scene. A search resulted in the discovery of more items and a firearm that corroborated the victim’s statements. Investigators determined that all of the individuals acted in concert with the kidnappings and assaults.

All eight suspects were jailed in the Caldwell County Detention Center in Lenoir. Bond was set at $300,000 secured for Anthony Bumgarner, James, Bowlin, and Aungst. Coffey, Souther, Tabitha Bumgarner, and Hernandez received bonds of $100,000 secured. They were all scheduled to appear in District Court today (October 27). The investigation into this case remains active and additional charges are expected.