Arrests made in shooting at Walmart

Published 3:28 pm Wednesday, November 21, 2018

On November 18, 2018, at 7:21 AM, Officers with the Elizabethton Police Department were dispatched to Wal-Mart #690 located at 1001 Overmountain Drive in Elizabethton in reference to a shooting. At about the same time, Lucas Paul Bulla-(11/28/98) arrived at the Sycamore Shoals Emergency Room with gunshot wounds to his chest. The resulting investigation revealed that Lucas Bulla had been in the company of his friend, Edward Wayne Sargent Jr-(09/31/98) who arranged to meet a female in the parking lot of Wal-Mart #690 to sell illegal narcotics. The female, Jonelle Obrien-(02/24/00), arrived with Michael Joe Arnold-(08/08/97) and Brandon Ronnie Rhea-(09/29/99). Jonelle Obrien and Michael Arnold entered Mr. Sargent’s vehicle in row one of the parking lot to purchase the narcotics. While seated in the backseat of Mr. Sargent’s vehicle and after obtaining the narcotics, Michael Arnold displayed a handgun and demanded all of the valuables. An argument then ensued after Mr. Sargent and Mr. Bulla refused the robbery attempt and exited the vehicle. After exiting the vehicle, Lucas Bulla was shot once in the chest by Brandon Rhea who was seated in the driver’s seat of Ms. Obrien’s vehicle. Both vehicles then left the scene. Mr. Sargent drove Mr. Bulla to the emergency room where he was treated for entry and exit gunshot injuries to his chest. A .40 caliber shell casing was recovered at the scene. As a result of the investigation, it was found that Jonelle Obrien, Michael Arnold, and Brandon Rhea planned the robbery prior to meeting Mr. Sargent. After fleeing the scene, Michael Arnold and Jonelle Obrien assisted Brandon Rhea in avoiding apprehension in relation to the shooting. All three are charged with aggravated robbery and conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery. Brandon Rhea is charged with attempted second degree murder. Michael Arnold and Jonelle Obrien are charged with accessory after the fact.

With the assistance of Johnson City Police Department, Arnold and Obrien were arrested yesterday afternoon (11-20-2018) and Rhea was arrested this morning (11-21-2018).  The suspects were booked into the Carter County Jail.

No other information is available to be released.

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