Two suspects arrested after attempted drug deal ends in stabbing death

West Virginia

MARTINSBURG, W. Va. (WDVM) — Two suspects involved in a deadly attempted drug deal were arrested on Friday by Martinsburg Police.

Jaiquan Elderidge and Tremayne McConnell are facing multiple counts of attempted robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery for their involvement in an attempted drug deal on June 4, 2021, that ended in one man dying from stab wounds.

On the evening of the incident, Martinsburg Police officers were dispatched to Berkeley Medical Center after Elderidge and McConnell dropped John Wilson, who was suffering from stab wounds, off in the lobby. Officers conducted a traffic stop of the two men using information provided by hospital staff. However, after speaking with investigators, Elderidge and McConnell were released pending a follow-up and investigation.

During the traffic stop, officers were notified of Wilson’s passing. The department was also receiving multiple calls regarding a disturbance and stabbing which occurred near W. Stephen Street and Virginia Avenue. Police then towed the Black Audi involved in the incident to a secure lot for a search warrant to be conducted at a later time.

Officers then located the other people involved in the disturbance. Police say there were at least three teenagers, around 15 and 16-years-old, and two young adults involved.

Based on information gathered from witness questioning as well as the investigation, police believe Wilson, Elderidge, and McConnell were all involved in a plan to attack and rob the three teenagers. One of the teens agreed to sell approximately 26 grams of marijuana to one of the three adults, after meeting on social media. The teenage seller agreed to meet at a predetermined location within Martinsburg city limits.

Police believe Elderidge met the three teenagers and led them into an alley where Wilson and McConnell pulled up in the Black Audi and tried to rob the teens of the marijuana and other belongings. The teens all fled in separate directions and one sustained minor injuries from being punched.

After a short period of time, two of the teens met up with a number of young adult friends and tried to walk to their homes. Police say the teens even alerted their families of what had happened. However, as the teens were attempting to go home, Wilson, Elderidge, and McConnell found the teens near W. Stephen Street and Virginia Avenue and tried to chase the teens.

Based on the investigation, police believe Wilson chased after one of the teens and tried to stab him with a knife. The teen also pulled out a knife and swung at Wilson in an act of self-defense, trying to put distance between the two men. However, in doing so, the teenager stabbed Wilson in the chest, which would lead to his death.

The teenager who stabbed Wilson is not believed to be facing charges for the death of Wilson as police say the teen “was in fear for his life” and was acting in self-defense. However, the teen will be facing charges in Berkeley County Juvenile Court in regards to possession of marijuana with intent to distribute for his role in the attempted drug deal.

Elderidge and McConnell both face three felony charges of attempted robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery for their involvement in the incident. Elderidge turned himself into Martinsburg Police on Wednesday and McConnell was arrested by MPD officers on Friday.

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