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South Hills shooting victim critical

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A South Hills man is in critical condition after being shot early Thursday in an apparent robbery or drug deal gone bad.

Hai Nguyen, 47, of 833 Oakwood Road, just off Corridor G in South Hills, was shot in the chest and the leg at about 4:30 a.m., according to Lt. Steve Cooper of the Charleston Police Department.

Cooper said Nguyen was shot outside the front door of his house after an apparent altercation. He said police found several hundred dollars strewn across the lawn and a crack pipe inside the house.

Police said the shooting could have stemmed from a robbery, a drug deal, or a combination of the two. "We're speculating there was some kind of transaction that took place," Cooper said. "A witness heard the shooter demand money."

Cooper said police are talking with Nguyen's two roommates to try to find out more about the incident, and have recovered a handgun believed used in the shooting. He said police also talked to Nguyen at the hospital, but the victim was able only to describe his alleged assailant as a black man in dark clothing before losing consciousness.

Nygun underwent surgery Thursday morning and was in critical condition following the shooting, Cooper said.

Oakwood Road was closed at Cantley Drive for more than an hour following the shooting as police searched for the suspect. Cooper said police do not yet have a good idea of who they're looking for.

Cooper said Nguyen and the alleged shooter apparently knew each other. He said residents and children in the usually quiet neighborhood should not be overly concerned about the shooting.

"The victim and the suspect were known to each other, and we don't believe anyone has reason to worry," he said. "This was not a random shooting."

Reach Rusty Marks at rustymarks@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1215.


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