Crime

A shop owner killed a man over a stolen boat – but he got the wrong guy, officials say

A photo of the boat stolen from Gore Marine.
A photo of the boat stolen from Gore Marine. NEW HANOVER COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE

An eastern North Carolina boat shop owner tracked down and shot a man who he thought stole a $200,000 boat, but the victim was innocent, investigators say.

David Wayne Gore, 52, was initially charged with felony assault but is now charged with murder, since 34-year-old Allen Blanchard died Monday from the gunshot wound to the head, WECT reported.

GORE
David Wayne Gore BLADEN COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE

The 34-foot center console Venture boat was taken Dec. 17 from Gore’s Wilmington business, Gore Marine Metal Fabricators, and a tip led Gore to an abandoned lumber mill near the Kelly community in Bladen County, according to multiple news reports.

Gore found Blanchard and 33-year-old Ryan Ciro Thau, both of Wilmington, at the former Squires Timber, where Blanchard was shot Saturday, the Star-News reported.

Bladen County Chief Deputy Larry Guyton later confirmed Blanchard and Thau had nothing to do with the stolen boat, the report said.

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