Deputies: Murder suspect killed man after fight over tablet, claimed it was suicide

Justin Ryan Fowler (Source MCSO)

The McDowell County Sheriff's Office said a man is facing a murder charge after a slaying in January.

Deputies responded to a home on Walker Road around 4:25 a.m. on Jan. 18 where they found 28-year-old John Christopher Hubbard deceased.

Hubbard had suffered a gunshot wound to the chest. Deputies said the suspect, 27-year-old Justin Ryan Fowler, told them Hubbard shot himself.

“We were very skeptical from the beginning about Fowler’s story,” said Capt. Shannon Smith. “We have conducted numerous interviews and examined evidence and came to the conclusion that the wound was not self-inflicted. Fowler did shoot and kill Hubbard.”After an investigation, deputies said they discovered the shooting was prompted by an argument over a missing electronic tablet. Fowler hit the victim over the head and then shot him in the chest with a small-caliber pistol, deputies said.

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