Central Point man arrested in December shooting at Orchard Park Apartments

(Amanda Loman/Salem Reporter)

Police on Sunday arrested a Central Point man on charges that he shot and injured a man at a northeast Salem apartment complex in December. 

Kenneth Wayne Felton, 25, was charged April 22 with second-degree attempted murder, first-degree assault and possessing a firearm as a felon in Marion County Circuit Court, according to court records.

Felton is also a suspect in a separate attempted murder investigation, the Salem Police Department said in a news release Monday, though court and jail records did not show any charged files in connection with the second incident.

The victims in both cases survived their injuries, police said.

The most recent incident Felton is accused in was a shooting at the intersection of Northeast Pine and Broadway Streets on Dec. 30, 2021. The victim was standing outside his vehicle when two men approached him and asked for a ride. When he refused, they shot him, according to the news release.

Police on Monday identified Felton as a suspect in that shooting.

That came three days after a man was shot at Orchard Park Apartments. 4368 Kacey Circle N.E. Felton has now been charged in that shooting.

Salem police detective Grant Foster wrote the following account of the Dec. 27 shooting in a probable cause affidavit.

Salem police responded to the apartment complex at 9:44 p.m. and found a man with a gunshot wound in the parking lot.

Officer Griffin McDowell spoke with 33-year-old Dustan Flaten, who appeared to have a gunshot wound to his upper torso and about a half-inch laceration to the middle of his forehead that was bleeding.

Police found two 9mm cartridge cases in the parking lot of the complex.

Flaten later told police at Salem Hospital that he had been communicating with a woman later identified as Darcie Wetzel-Barnett who had agreed to help him work on a car in the parking lot, and he had sent her a pin of his live location over Facebook Messenger

She called him when she still couldn’t find him, and he described his location further.

Within about 30 seconds of her hanging up the phone, Flaten said two men arrived in a newer, black, two-door coupe and confronted him.

A man got out of the driver seat and asked Flaten, “Are you Dirty?” and “Are you Dustin?” Flaten told police “Dirty” was his nickname. Flaten said when he told the man his name was Dustin, the man began punching him and reaching for what he believed was a gun in the man’s waistband.

Flaten started running away and heard two gunshots before feeling pain in his side and realizing he had been shot.

Police reviewed surveillance video from the apartment’s parking lot, which did not cover the area of the shooting but showed a newer black sedan drive south through the parking lot on the east side of the complex, where the shooting occurred, then back toward the area of the shooting.

At 11:19 p.m. the next day on Dec. 28, 2021, Salem officer David Baker was doing a routine patrol of the area of Captain’s Pub at 460 Pine Street N.E. when he found an unoccupied car with no license plates parked with the windows slightly down in the back parking lot.

Baker saw a woman he identified as Wetzel-Barnett walking away from the area where the car was parked before going into the pub.

The officer checked the vehicle identification number and saw the car had been reported stolen. 

Baker said another officer told him the car matched the description of the suspect’s car from the shooting involving Flaten the night before.

On Dec. 30, 2021, police searched the car and found a bag of 9mm bullets as well as two loose bullets in the driver door pocket that were the same brand as the cartridge casings recovered from the parking lot of the Orchard Park Apartments. Police also found two letters addressed to Kenneth Felton.

Foster learned from Salem police Sgt. Joshua Edmiston on Jan. 1 that the Stanfield (Oregon) Police Department had arrested Wetzel-Barnett and Felton after both were found possessing a stolen car with a 9mm handgun in the glove box.

Foster spoke with both of them while they were in jail.

Felton said he had previously been to the Orchard Park Apartment complex before the detective told him the location of the shooting. He denied he was involved in the shooting.

Wetzel-Barnett later said she had been with Felton and had seen him shoot Flaten the night Flaten was shot. She said Felton had first confronted Flaten and asked if he was “Dirty” before assaulting him and shooting him in the back.

Wetzel-Barnett told the detective Felton’s gun had jammed after he shot. Had it not jammed, she said, “it would have been much worse,” he wrote in the affidavit.

She said she had not known Felton was going to shoot Flaten and that she had recorded the shooting on her cell phone. She said someone she knew as “Felon” – who police later identified 28-year-old Cesar Luis Villanueva – was also present with them that night.

Police on Jan. 18 performed a digital extraction of Wetzel-Barnett’s phone and found a video listing the approximate date and time Flaten was shot. Her voice could be heard in the background and a man who police believed to be Felton was seen confronting a man who appeared to be Flaten.

The video showed the two men exchange words, as well as Flaten running away and Felton walking toward him and shooting him in the upper torso at a close range.

Salem police detectives arrested Felton Sunday without incident, according to the news release. 

Felton was also charged Monday in Marion County Circuit Court with possessing a firearm as a felon, having been previously convicted in 2016 of unauthorized use of a vehicle, court records showed.

Contact reporter Ardeshir Tabrizian: [email protected] or 503-929-3053.

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