Update (August 10, 2017) -- Hess plead guilty to a LEVEL 6 count of Dealing a controlled substance and was sentenced to 18 months at the DOC which was SUSPENDED with 18 months added for supervised provisions as outlined by the court. Defendant also pleaded GUILTY to visiting a COMMON NUSIANCE and was sentenced to 18 months at the DOC which was SUSPENDED with 18 months added for supervised provisions as outlined by the court.
MUNCIE, Ind. – A man died after an early morning shooting in Muncie, and a homicide investigation is underway.
According to police, the shooting was reported around 4 a.m. in the 800 block of West Main Street.
The Delaware County Coroner's Office identified the victim as 20-year-old Zachary Farmer from Middletown. Farmer's body was found in a car with multiple gunshot wounds, the coroner said.
The preliminary manner of death is a homicide, according to the coroner's office. Two men have been arrested in connection with the case, but not for the murder.
Hunter Hess and Isaiah Davis, both 19 years old, face charges for obstruction of justice, maintaining a common nuisance and possession with intent to deal in marijuana.
According to court documents, Hess and Davis claim a gunman came into the home and fatally shot Farmer. Police asked Hunter why he didn't initially call police, and he said he thought it would be quicker to take Farmer to the hospital.
Police found the body in Hess' car.
Hunter also denied any knowledge of drugs or guns at the home. Police found guns, several pounds of marijuana and Xanax in the home. Police say Hunter altered his story after hearing Davis' account.
Hunter eventually said he didn't want to call police because of the drugs and guns in the home. Police say he intentionally misled investigators.
Neighbors reported hearing loud sounds, but said it didn't sound like gunshots.
“I heard two sounds that sounded like somebody trying to break into a door, like when you try to nudge it and get a credit card in there. But from what I can see now, it could have been the muffled sounds of a gunshot from inside of a house and I didn’t think about that at the time," said neighbor Brandin Gardner.
Farmer is the second homicide victim to die from multiple gunshots in under one week in Muncie. It's also the city's second murder of the year. Last weekend, police were called to a home to find 39-year-old Joseph Johnson dead near a car. Police are working leads in this case, but no suspects have been arrested.
Muncie Police Chief, Joe Winkle, said right now, investigators do not believe the two cases are connected.
"I don't think this is something that should concern the residents, per say. I think they are completely different areas of town and I don't see anything yet that would relate the two, so I don't think there's a reason for peoples safety throughout the town," Winkle said.
Police said they're still searching for a motive in this case.
"We've got someone that's fired a gun and committed homicide. We just have no idea right now who that is," said Winkle.
“It’s aggravating but at the same time, with as often as it happens, you get used to it. It’s not you, it’s not your family so you try to stay out of it but at the same time care about thy neighbor care about thy people," Gardner said.