A Morgan County man fatally shot his roommate and dumped his body at the Tennessee River after they argued and the victim “presented a .22-caliber revolver,” according to an investigator’s affidavit filed Friday.
Bobby Daryl Hamblen, 59, of 3365 E. Upper River Road, Somerville, was arrested Thursday at his home and charged with murder in the slaying, the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office said. Hamblen remained in Morgan County Jail on Friday in lieu of $200,000 bail.
The body of David James McCluskey, 54, who was most recently of the same address as Hamblen, was discovered Wednesday morning after a resident walking a dog found it on the riverbank at the boat landing in Somerville, Sheriff’s Office spokesman Mike Swafford said. McCluskey previously had been a Russellville resident.
The shooting occurred at "their residence," and Hamblen used his own handgun before he drove the victim’s body to the Bluff City Road boat landing and left it in the water, Morgan County Sheriff’s Office investigator Joey Clark wrote in the affidavit filed in District Court.
Hamblen was at the residence with McCluskey on Tuesday when they got into a “verbal altercation," the affidavit said. Hamblen said McCluskey held out the .22-caliber revolver and “threatened to kill him," Clark wrote.
“Mr. Hamblen stated that during the altercation, he struck the victim over the head multiple times with a pool stick in an attempt to make the victim drop the firearm,” the affidavit reads.
Hamblen told investigators that McCluskey, after being struck the with pool stick, attempted to fire the revolver but didn’t realize its safety was engaged.
“Mr. Hamblen stated that he then went into his bedroom and retrieved his .22-caliber single-shot pistol and confronted the victim by asking him once again to drop the firearm. … Mr. Hamblen stated that after asking the victim several more times to drop the firearm, he then shot the victim in the upper torso,” the affidavit continues.
The victim “died instantly,” Hamblen told investigators. The suspect said about 30 minutes later he loaded the body into the bed of his 2000 Chevrolet S-10 and took it to the river.
On Wednesday, the affidavit says, Hamblen drove to the “truck trail” off Cain Road on the Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge and threw the pistol used in the shooting death into the water.
Clark wrote in the affidavit that the firearm was retrieved from the river Thursday “in the exact area where Mr. Hamblen stated he threw it.”