A Springfield, Mo., man was charged Wednesday with first-degree murder in a fatal shooting Saturday in Alton.

According to an Alton Police Department release, at approximately 12:07 p.m. Saturday, officers began responding to the area of East 11th Street near Alby Street in reference to a trouble call.  While officers were en route, the Alton Police Department began receiving reports of gunshots being fired in the area of East 11th Street.

After officers began arriving on scene, it was determined that a shooting took place in the 100 block of East 11th Street.  Officers located a gunshot victim, who was transported to a local hospital by Alton Fire Department paramedics. The 30-year-old victim, identified as Robert F. Woods, who had a prior address in the 100 block of E. 11th Street, was later pronounced dead.  

The person responsible for the shooting was located and is subsequently being detained.  The Madison County Sheriff’s Department assisted the Alton Police Patrol Division with scene security until the arrival of detectives with the Alton Police Department Criminal Investigations Division.

After an investigation by the Alton Police Department and the Madison County Coroner’s Office, the information learned during this investigation was presented to the Madison County State’s Attorney’s Office.

The Madison County State’s Attorney’s Office charged Arvin W. Freeman, 44, of Springfield, Mo., with two counts of first-degree murder.  Associate Judge Neil Schroeder set bail at $1 million.

For informational purposes, multiple counts of first-degree murder can be charged based on alternative theories of murder. The facts dictate which murder counts to charge and how many. The number of counts is not limited to the number of victims.

This was not a random act of violence and the subjects involved in this investigation were familiar with each other, police said.

“The Alton Police Department would like to extend our condolences to the family and friends of those affected by this tragic situation,” the release states.

All charges, as well as the statements made herein, are based upon probable cause. The defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

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