2nd-degree murder charge dropped in 2008 shooting

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by Joe DePriest / Charlotte Observer

Joe DePriest / Charlotte Observer

Posted on February 25, 2011 at 4:41 PM

LINCOLNTON, N.C. -- Lincoln County authorities have dropped a second-degree murder charge against a 49-year-old man in connection with a 2008 shooting death.

Robert Clarence Thompson had been out of jail on a $75,000 secured bond awaiting trail.

He was charged with the May 12, 2008 death of Jimmy Lee Potter Jr. Officers had responded to 5456 King Wilkinson Road after receiving a report of shots being fired.

They found the victim lying in front of a vehicle near a garage at the residence with a gunshot wound to the chest.

Authorities said the victim identified Thompson as the shooter. According to the sheriff's office, the men had apparently gotten into an argument over money owed to one another and that a fight erupted.

Authorities said Thompson told them that Potter pulled a gun and that he (Thompson) shot in self defense. Thompson was arrested at his residence on Fay Jones Road without incident. He was taken to CMC-Lincoln for treatment of injuries in the altercation.

Major Crimes Unit Detective Lt. Tim Johnson said that after further investigation into the case and meeting with the district attorney this week they decided to drop the charge because it can't be shown that the incident wasn't self-defense.

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