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Charges Dropped for Second Defendant in Arden-area Shell Gas Station Shootings

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Murder charges dismissed for 2nd defendant in 2022 Arden-area Shell gas station shootings

Two first-degree murder charges have been dropped for a second suspect in the shooting deaths of two people at a Fletcher gas station in December 2022. Following a week-long trial in Buncombe County Superior Court where Godiet Corral, 33, was found guilty of two counts of first-degree murder for the deaths of Sandy Elizabeth Torrey and Bryan Emmanuel Khopkar, Cody Wayne Dockins was cleared of first-degree murder charges for which he spent about a year-and-a half in jail.

Buncombe County Chief Public Defender’s Statement

Buncombe County Chief Public Defender Sam Snead, Dockins’ attorney, told the Citizen Times that Dockins’ charges were dismissed “immediately following the verdict” on March 12. Dockins testified in Corral’s trial on March 5 that he witnessed Corral shoot both Torrey and Khopkar in a brown Volvo parked at a Shell-brand gas station on Mills Gap Road in Arden, after an argument broke out in the car on Dec. 19, 2022.

Snead said they didn’t have an agreement with the district attorney’s office that Dockins’ charges would be dismissed, but they anticipated that might be the outcome. “I told Cody that we can feel pretty good about the case if (Corral) is convicted,” Snead said. “(Corral) testified that he shot them both and he was convicted of first-degree murder on both of them.”

Dockins’ Plea and Charges

Dockins pleaded guilty on March 20 to unrelated property crimes predating the shooting in 2021 and 2022. He was originally charged with two counts of breaking and entering a motor vehicle, misdemeanor larceny, and felony possession of stolen property. Dockins pleaded to misdemeanors for those charges and was given time served for the roughly 500 days he spent in jail for the dropped murder charges, Snead said. He is currently being held in the Buncombe County Detention Facility for unserved warrants from 2022 out of Henderson County.

HERE Asheville
Author: HERE Asheville

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