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Martinsville Police investigating homicide after man found dead in vehicle

A homicide investigation is underway after police say a man was found dead in a vehicle in Martinsville Saturday night.

According to the Martinsville Police Department, the Martinsville-Henry County 911 Center received a call at 11:43 p.m. of gunshots around the 1400 block of Fayette Street.

We’re told when officers arrived, they found three people who directed the officers to a pickup truck that had went over a guardrail, down a steep embankment and was upside down.

Officers proceeded down the embankment but discovered that the driver and only occupant was deceased. Authorities said the three people who pointed out the vehicle were not involved in the incident but came upon the scene immediately after the vehicle crash.

According to authorities, officers discovered evidence at the scene that verified the earlier gunshots and that the pickup truck was the intended target of those gunshots.

They said the Martinsville Fire & EMS Department responded to the scene for the safe securing and removal of the victim and vehicle.

We’re told that because of the location of the incident, the road had to be closed off temporarily with the assistance of the Henry County Sheriff’s Office and the Virginia State Police.

According to police, the victim was identified as Antoine Preston, 47, of Martinsville. The state medical examiner’s office in Roanoke will conduct an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death.

MPD said the investigation is in its early stages as detectives are continuing to collect and process evidence.

If anyone has any information regarding this crime, they are encouraged to contact Sergeant Harley Durham at 276-403-5330 or they can do so anonymously through Crime Stoppers at 276-63-CRIME.

Source: WSLS News 10

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