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Attempted murder suspect turns himself in

DONNIE BLOUNT SR.

A Belhaven man wanted for attempted murder turned himself in to the Beaufort County magistrates’ office Monday night.

According to Belhaven Police Chief F.P. Clingenpeel, Donnie Blount Sr., 56, of 1003 Pamlico Street, faces multiple charges for an incident that occurred at the Wilco-Hess station on Main Street in Belhaven on Sunday evening. Video surveillance and witness testimony indicate Blount walking into the store with a gun and firing a single shot at the woman behind the counter. She ducked and avoided injury. The shot, instead, damaged a stand holding cigarettes, said Clingenpeel.

Police said the woman at whom Blount allegedly shot is his estranged girlfriend.

“There were ongoing domestic problems between the two,” said Clingenpeel. “It was a relationship that had gone south.”

Clingenpeel said that, locally, Blount is not known as a violent person, explaining that Blount’s prior felony convictions are for driving offenses.

“This surprised me and the community, as well,” the chief said. “I think the issue speaks to the heat of passion in a relationship. (Blount) is usually a very polite person. But with domestic situations, you never know.”

Blount was at large for 24 hours before he turned himself. He is being held without the benefit of bond in the Beaufort County Detention Center, facing charges of attempted first-degree murder, assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill, possession of firearm by a felon, injury to real property and discharging a weapon in town limits. The weapon used in the crime was not recovered, though Clingenpeel said that based on surveillance tapes his officers viewed, the weapon appeared to be a sawed-off shotgun.