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UPDATE | Man who admitted to killing teen dies in jail

(WSAZ)
Published: Nov. 21, 2016 at 10:05 PM EST
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UPDATE 10/4/19 @ 10:30 a.m.

A man convicted of fatally shooting a teenager in Charleston has died at a detention center in Kentucky.

Kentucky State Police tells WSAZ inmates at the Carter County Detention Center found William Pulliam unresponsive in his cell Thursday evening.

The inmates alerted jail staff who tried to render aid. Paramedics were called and also tried to revive him, but were unsuccessful.

No foul play is suspected.

Troopers say his body has been sent to the coroner's office for an autopsy and an official determination on cause of death.

Back in August, Pulliam pleaded guilty to second-degree murder for the shooting death of James Means, 15. The shooting happened on Charleston's East End back in 2016.

He was being held in the Carter County Detention Center on a federal firearms charge.

Keep checking the WSAZ app for the latest information.


UPDATE 8/5/19 @ 5:25 p.m.

A man pleaded guilty Monday to fatally shooting a teenager on Charleston's East End, the Kanawha County Prosecutor's Office said.

William Pulliam, 65, pleaded guilty Monday to second-degree murder for the death of James Means, 15.

Investigators say Pulliam shot and killed Means at the corner of Nancy Street and Washington Street after a confrontation. The shooting happened Nov. 21, 2016.

Pulliam faces up to 20 years in prison.


UPDATE 12/19/18 @ 11:10 p.m.

A man accused of fatally shooting a teenager on Charleston's East End has been ruled competent to stand trial.

William Pulliam failed a previous competency evaluation and was sent to a mental health hospital after that ruling in May. Pulliam is accused of shooting and killing James Means in November 2016.

Means was only 15 years old. The shooting happened outside the Dollar General on Charleston's East End.

Pulliam said then that he acted in self-defense when he shot Means. Prosecutors say Means was shot more than once.


UPDATE 5/7/18 @ 11:19 a.m.

A man accused of fatally shooting a teenager on Charleston's East End isn't competent enough to stand trial.

On Monday, Kanawha County's Judge King ruled that William Pulliam would be sent to the Sharpe Hospital in Weston.

Pulliam previously failed a psych evaluation.

He'll spend up to three months at the hospital to see if he would be able to later stand trial. If not, there will be another hearing.

Pulliam is accused of shooting and killing James Means, 15, back in November 2016. It happened outside the Dollar General at the intersection of Nancy Street and Washington Street East.


UPDATE 8/17/17 @ 12:15 p.m.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A man accused of fatally shooting a teenager on Charleston's East End won't stand trial until December.

William Pulliam appeared in a Kanawha County courtroom on Thursday.

He is accused of shooting and killing James Means, 15, back in November 2016. It happened outside the Dollar General at the intersection of Nancy Street and Washington Street East.

During an April court appearance, Pulliam wanted to plead guilty to being in possession of a firearm when he wasn't supposed to have one but the judge declined the plea.

Pulliam said then that he acted in self-defense when he shot Means.

Prosecutors say Means was shot more than once.

Pulliam's trial was expected to start Monday but has now been moved to December 11. The defense had asked for additional time.

Keep checking WSAZ Mobile and WSAZ.com for the latest information.

UPDATE 4/24/17 @ 6:20 p.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A man charged in connection with the shooting death of a 15-year-old boy is scheduled to go on trial Aug. 21. William Pulliam, 62, was arraigned Monday in Kanawha County Circuit Court. During his arraignment, Pulliam wanted to plead guilty to being a person prohibited from using a firearm and plead not guilty to first-degree murder and felony use of a firearm. Kanawha County Circuit Judge Charles King would not allow a guilty plea on Monday, but said he would schedule a hearing for later in the week. Pulliam is accused of shooting and killing James Means on Charleston's East End last November.
UPDATE 3/31/17 @ 12:15 a.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A man who told police "another piece of trash is off the street" after allegedly shooting a teenager was indicted by a grand jury in Kanawha County. William Pulliam is accused of shooting and killing James Means in November. He is charged with first-degree murder. Pulliam and the 15-year-old got into an argument outside a store on Charleston's East End. Pulliam's lawyer say he acted in self defense, while prosecutors argue Means was shot and tried to run but fell and was shot again. In February, Pulliam was indicted at the federal level for lying about a domestic violence charge on his application to buy a gun.
UPDATE 2/7/17 @ 11:20 p.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A man charged with shooting and killing a teenager on Charleston's East End in November was indicted at the federal level Tuesday. According to the indictment, William Pulliam was indicted by a grand jury for lying about a domestic violence charge on his application to buy a gun. The indictment says Pulliam lied about a domestic violence conviction from 2013 when buying a 380 revolver in June 2016. That's the same model gun police say he used in the fatal shooting of James Means in November 2016. Means, 15, died after being shot twice at the intersection of Nancy Street and Washington Street East on Charleston's East End. Pulliam admitted to he shooting shortly after it happened. Pulliam is also facing federal charges for being a domestic batterer in possession of a firearm.
UPDATE 12/15/16 @ 12:05 a.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Neighbors across Charleston are continuing to honor the life of James Means by making sure his death brings change. The 15-year-old was shot and killed three weeks ago on Charleston's East End. William Pulliam admitted to pulling the trigger; saying he took "another piece of trash off the streets". That language is what prompted a massive gathering Wednesday night, where hundreds of folks of all races and walks of life -- from Charleston and beyond -- came together to say hate is not welcome in their neighborhood. Those neighbors came together at Abundant Life Ministries, where they began a memorial march for James, culminating in a vigil near the location where he died. After a few moments of silent reflection, folks walked back to the ministry, where a prayer service was held. Following the service, the church also hosted an open house with several volunteer organizations dedicated to Charleston children. Dozens signed up to begin offering their time to various causes. Event organizer, Andrea Tyree, says James' death struck a nerve forcing folks to try to put an end to intolerance. "It was a catalyzing factor in that it showed that we need to do something and that it needs to happen now," Tyree said. "I think that everyone knew that and that's why we got such a great turnout." Tyree says, by the end of the event, several signup sheets were full. "It's amazing," Tyree said. "Hopefully it gets some more mentors, gets more youth involved in different programs throughout Charleston and helps everyone grow." The case against William Pulliam, the man accused in Means' death, was sent to the grand jury on Dec. 1.
UPDATE 12/2/16 @ 11:35 p.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A teenager murdered last week on Charleston's East End was laid to rest Friday. Dozens of people gathered to honor the life and memory of 15-year-old James Means. Services were held at Emanuel Baptist Church in Charleston. His family tells us he was the kind of kid who could light up a room with his smile. The case against William Pulliam, the man accused in Means' death, was sent to the grand jury on Thursday.
UPDATE 12/1/2016 CHARLESTON, W.Va (WSAZ) -- A judge has determined there to be probable cause in the shooting death of a teenage boy in Charleston. James Means, 15, died after being shot twice November 21 at the intersection of Nancy Street and Washington Street East on Charleston's East End. William Pulliam, the man who admitted to shooting the teen, appeared in a Kanawha County courtroom Thursday for his preliminary hearing. Several of Means' family members were also present at the hearing . There were at least two video surveillance files cited in court Thursday. A detective testified that at least one video was clear enough for Means and Pulliam to be identified and one video surveillance system recorded audio. Detective Chris Lioi with Charleston Police says video surveillance shows Means was unarmed and did not have anything in his hands at the time of the shooting. "Prior to the shooting, there's a house that has audio," Lioi testified. He repeats what he heard Pulliam say: "That toy gun is gonna get you f----ing killed, and James' response is no it isn't." The detective says video surveillance shows Means being shot twice by Pulliam. Lioi said Means was shot once in the chest and fell to the ground. He said Means got up and tried to run away, but Pulliam shot him a second time in the back. Pulliam's lawyer claimed his client acted in self-defense. The two had exchanged words on Pulliam's way to the Dollar General store. When Pulliam left the store, the video surveillance shows Means crossing the street and the shooting shortly after. Pulliam's lawyer, Richard Holicker, questioned detective Lioi about a BB gun that was recovered from the crime scene. Lioi says a black handgun was found in one of the witness' bags. The witness also told Lioi that Means would sometimes carry the BB gun. Detective Lioi testified that Pulliam was not remorseful when he was interviewed by detectives. Lioi said Pulliam did not appear to be sorry. In court Thursday, he did not show much emotion. Holicker argued that Pulliam shot Means in self-defense. "Don't know exactly what led up to it, but Mr. Pulliam shot Mr. Means. None of that says pre-meditation. None of that says intentional, deliberate, pre-meditated murder. It's a killing, but it is not a first degree murder," he said in court Thursday. Prosecutor Maryclaire Akers disputed his argument. "He's trying to run away when the defendant shoots him again in the back. The victim then runs from the house he came and collapses on the porch," she said in court. "That is not self-defense. That is willful, pre-meditated, deliberate killing." Magistrate Mike Sisson ruled that there was enough probable cause for the case to go to a grand jury. There's no word yet on a court date. A memorial service for Means is scheduled for Friday evening at Emmanuel Baptist Church in Charleston. Keep clicking WSAZ for the latest on this story.
UPDATE 12/1/16 @ 3:25 p.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A judge has determined probable cause has been found in the case against a man charged in the shooting death of a 15-year-old boy. William Pulliam was in a Kanawha County courtroom Thursday. Pulliam is accused of shooting and killing 15-year-old James Means on November 21. Charleston Police Department detectives testified Thursday that Means was shot in the chest, fell and then was shot again while running away. Right after the shooting, police say Pulliam told them he felt threatened by the teen, saying the 15-year-old approached him as he came out of a store. He said he and the teen had exchanged words a short time earlier. Keep checking WSAZ Mobile and WSAZ.com for the latest information.
UPDATE 11/23/16 @ 10:40 p.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- The life of a young man was honored Wednesday night near the site of where he was gunned down two days earlier. James Means, who was just 15, was killed Monday night along Washington Street on Charleston's east end. The man who said he shot the young man in self-defense is in jail charged with his murder. Classmates from Capital High School held the vigil at the intersection of Washington Street and Nancy Street. They lit candles and wrote messages on a board that had pictures of Means. "This was unexpected because he was a really good person," Means' friend Haley Braxton said. "He wasn't a fighter. He didn't mess with anybody. He always made everybody so happy." The U.S. Attorney says a review is being conducted to see if the crime meets the criteria for a hate crime. Police say the shooter, William Pulliam, told them he felt threatened by the teen, saying the 15-year-old approached him as he came out of a store. He said he and the teen had exchanged words a short time earlier. Police say Pulliam showed no remorse and even stated he felt like "another piece of trash is off the street." The family says, as heartbroken as they are, it's important to not stoke the flames of outrage, but to let the legal system run its course.
UPDATE 11/23/16 @ 10:40 a.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A teenager's family is struggling to come to terms with why their loved one was gunned down Monday night by a man on Charleston's East End. James Means, 15, died after being shot twice Monday night. It happened about 8:45 p.m. at the intersection of Nancy Street and Washington Street East in Charleston. Police say William Pulliam, who is charged with first-degree murder, pulled the trigger. He told police he felt threatened by the the teen, saying Means approached him as he came out of a store in Charleston. The pair had exchanged words a short time earlier. Police say Pulliam expressed no remorse and stated, "The way I look at it, that's another piece of trash off the street." WSAZ reached out to Assistant U.S. Attorney Steve Ruby to see if the shooting falls within the federal hate crime statute. "That review is in its early stages, and the fact that a review is being conducted should not be taken as any indication of what the review's outcome will be," Ruby said. The hate crimes statute "establishes a maximum sentence of life imprisonment for willfully using a firearm to kill another person because of the victim's actual or perceived race, color, religion or national origin." Pulliam is being held in South Central Regional Jail without bond. UPDATE 11/22/16 @ 9:40 p.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A teenager's family is struggling to come to terms with why their loved one was gunned down Monday night by a man on Charleston's East End. James Means, 15, died after being shot twice Monday night. It happened about 8:45 p.m. at the intersection of Nancy Street and Washington Street East in Charleston. Police say William Pulliam, who is charged with first-degree murder, pulled the trigger. He told police he felt threatened by the the teen, saying Means approached him as he came out of a store in Charleston. The pair had exchanged words a short time earlier. Teresa Means, the victim's aunt, knew her nephew from a different perspective. "James was an awesome kid," she said. "(He) could put a smile on anybody's face, no matter the situation." Smiles weren't easy to come by for his family Tuesday, but that's what James would have wanted for his family. "My son is in a safer place now, and we all love him," said his mother Nafia Adkins. She said she's confident the legal system will prevail. "We know that justice is going to succeed in this matter," Adkins said. "We are not going to put it in our hands. We are going to let the law put it in their hands." And while this family grieves the loss of a young man who they say could light up a room, even on the darkest of days, part of their prayer for peace is in the hands of the public. "We just want everybody know that we don't hold a grudge, so nobody else should hold a grudge," Teresa Means said. "We all have to forgive." The family is specifically asking people to only use social media in this situation to post condolences and memories about James, rather than to argue and speculate about the situation.
UPDATE 11/22/16 @ 7:40 p.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A man is facing charges after police say he shot and killed a teenager. It happened about 8:45 p.m. Monday at the intersection of Nancy Street and Washington Street East in Charleston. William Pulliam is charged with first-degree murder. According to the criminal complaint, James Harvey Means, 15, was taken to CAMC General where he was pronounced dead. He was shot twice. Witnesses told police that Means bumped into Pulliam in front of the Dollar General on Washington Street East. The two exchanged words, and Pulliam continued into the store. A witness says after leaving the store, Pulliam walked past the house where Means was sitting and they began to have a verbal dispute, according to the complaint. Means walked across the street to confront Pulliam. Pulliam then shot him twice, according to police. "James was the kid that was excited about working, just working," Dream Chasers Founder Obi Henderson said. "James wanted to be a businessman and open up a mechanic shop." Means was a Dream Chaser. The program works with at-risk youth to increase leadership skills, public speaking and entrepreneurship development. According to the criminal complaint, Pulliam confessed to shooting Means with a .380 revolver because he felt threatened. Police say he expressed no remorse and stated, "The way I look at it, that's another piece of trash off the street." "The fact that this man referred to two young African-American males, youth as trash is very disheartening and discouraging ... that in 2016, people walk around with such hate in their heart," Henderson said. During Pulliam's arraignment on Tuesday, he expressed concern for himself. "I'm going to be in here til December?" he asked the magistrate court judge. "I'm going to lose my job and everything." According to the complaint, Pulliam told police after the shooting he ate dinner then went to the home of his friend. The revolver was located at his friend's house. Pulliam is being held without bond. "James had three other siblings," Henderson said. "James' mother is your average west side mother working diligently to provide for her children and so now she has figure out and develop resources to put her son six feet under ground."
UPDATE 11/22/16 @ 8:30 a.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A man has been arrested and charged with murder in connection to a deadly shooting that happened on Charleston's East End. William Ronald Pulliam has been arrested and charged with first-degree murder in connection to the shooting. It happened around 8:45 p.m. Monday on Washington Street East. A teenager was shot in the abdomen during the incident. He was taken to the hospital where he later died. Pulliam is being held in South Central Regional Jail without bond. No other details about the shooting are being released at this time. Keep checking WSAZ Mobile and WSAZ.com for the latest information.
UPDATE 11/21/16 @ 11:44 p.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va.(WSAZ) -- A person shot on Washington Street East Monday night has died. The shooting happened around 8:45 p.m. in the city's East End. The person was shot in the abdomen. Police said the victim is a juvenile. A surveillance image of the suspect is included with this story. Keep checking WSAZ Mobile and WSAZ.com for the latest.
ORIGINAL STORY 11/21/16 @ 10:05 p.m. CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- One person was hurt Monday night after a shooting in the city's East End, Charleston Police say. It was reported about 8:45 p.m. on Washington Street East. That person was shot in the abdomen and was in surgery late Monday night at CAMC General. While our photographer was at the scene, police asked him to get in his car after they heard a loud noise in the area. Officers were not sure if it was another gunshot. Police have released an image of the suspect that was captured on a business's surveillance camera. It is included in the gallery below. Additional details are unavailable at this time Keep checking WSAZ Mobile and WSAZ.com for the latest.