Wheeling Police Chief Shawn Schwertfeger

WHEELING, W.Va. — Two northern panhandle oil and gas workers who admitted to police they were in a fight with two men they didn’t know early Saturday morning are charged with murder.

Police arrested Craig Tyler Peacock, 22 of Clewiston, Fla., and Jarrett Mathis Chandler, 24 of Winnfield, La., early Tuesday and charged them in the death of Wheeling Jesuit University student Kevin Figaniak. The 21-year-old senior lacrosse player died Sunday from injuries suffered in the fight. He and a friend had been at a bar Friday night and were walkin back to campus when Figaniak’s friend said three or four men jumped them.

WJU

Police say WJU senior Kevin Figaniak and a friend got into a verbal altercation Saturday morning minutes before a fight broke out.

The criminal complaint against Peacock and Chandler said the two were charged after police viewed video surveillance, combed through social media and conducted interviews. Police found the suspects at an Ohio County campsite where some oil and gas workers stay.

Both men agreed to give videotaped statements. They both told police they and their friends got into a verbal altercation with two men they didn’t know early Saturday morning. Peacock and Chandler said they followed the men down Edgington Lane, through the intersection and onto Locust Avenue, where the fight began.

“Suspect Chandler specifically stated that he engaged in striking the individual he was fighting,” police said in the criminal complaint.

Peacock told police he may have “kicked” the man he was fighting.

Both Peacock and Chandler told police they and their friends left the area while the men were on the ground. Figaniak suffered massive head injuries and died Sunday at a Pittsburgh hospital. His autopsy was completed Tuesday in Morgantown. Figaniak’s friend wasn’t as seriously injured and was able to speak with police.

Peacock and Chandler are being held on murder charges in the Northern Regional Jail on $1 million bail each.

Wheeling Police Chief Shawn Schwertfeger said Tuesday on MetroNews “Talkline” video surveillance from area businesses has greatly helped in the investigation.

“It headed us in the right direction,” he said, adding that more arrests could ensue.

“We’ve located two. We are working hard still. There’s a lot of loose ends to be tied up and we are looking at trying to locate a third or fourth individual.”

Peacock and Chandler are oil and gas workers in the region, but the chief cautioned against characterizing the workers in the area as problem causers.

“We shouldn’t paint them with a broad brush,” he said. “I have not seen any substantial police contacts or anything that causes us concern out of the ordinary.”

 

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Comments

  • tiger

    And when an eyewitness finally came forward said young mans friend picked him up to help, After pipeliners left the scene , and dropped his school mate on his head . Just what I heard through grape vine.

  • A

    Honestly, I think this is all ridiculous. If it were two other college kids that fought these kids and fatally injured one, we would have never heard another thing about it. Ignorance is all I see here.

  • KF

    Miss Debbie,
    You say that now and try to sound "holier than thou" after accusing the locals earlier of not having the knowledge to do this trade, shame on you. First your degrade us, and now you want to pray...

  • I am one

    Are you people missing the big picture? First of all quit pointing the finger. There is a life to be mourned and a life to be judged, not by us but by one greater. Yes this is very sad and upsets alot of people on both sides so dont get it twisted. I am a pipeliner and trust me when i say we ARE NOT all bad. I travel and work with my family and so do lots of others, we dont go drink at the bars we dont start anything with anyone, we simply work and mind our own buisness. It is very unfortanant that this happened these MEN in all parties should have walked away, still yet they didnt and now there is nothing anyone can do. Instead of slandering either side Mourn your lost one and Pray for the other, not to get what he deserves but for him to become a better man. Regardless of your feelings and thoughts always remember there is his side and his side and then there is a thing called the TRUTH.

    • KF

      I am one,
      I have had the pleasure of meeting lots of fine "out of town" workers that have attended church where I go and their children are even in our schools. Great people. The one comment that you made that these "MEN in all parties should have walked away" is the only thing that troubles me. Kevin did walk away. The fight took place several blocks from the bar that all had been present at. The men in jail DID NOT WALK AWAY, THEY FOLLOWED KEVIN. This is what makes this whole scenario more than an accident and makes it intentional. I mean no disrespect to you at all, just wanted to point that FACT out.

  • robert thomas

    John Boy Walton was mugged in Wheeling

  • Don Rawlings

    The bottom line, that will ultimately hang the two gas workers, is that they followed the WJU students as they were walking back to their dorm. They should have left the bar and went back to their camper, NOT followed the victims and got into another fight with disastrous consequences. That is called stalking and the major reason that this will not be tried as a simple bar fight.

    • BK

      You are right Don.....where this incident happened is quite a distance from the Alpha....it's not like it happened outside the bar. These four men went out of their way to attack the two students, who were actually on their way to the footbridge at the bottom of Locust that takes them to the campus.

  • pipelinerswifeanproud!

    I am a pipeliners wife an 90%of them are just good ole boys. Who's to say that they are druken idots when the kid who got killed was out partying. Yes maybe they took it too far but thats them as a person not because of there job as pipeliners. We dont hire locals because half of them couldnt do the work we pipeliners do. You can bash an hate on pipeliners but is that gonna bring him back or make the problem anybody.?

  • Rodney Hytonen

    Always follow the money. Look at the corrupt locals who profit, from $1K/month for spaces in the 'man camps,' (created by forcing out those who have lived there in a trailer for GENERATIONS, and now have literally NO alterative way to live,) to titty bars and hookers, to the mushrooming meth cookers, to the cash strapped local governments willing to look the other way when frackers pay lowball for a few "carefully limited" thousands of gallons of the water supply per whatever, and then just take and take millions, COMPETELY ignoring the contracts they know no only local lawyer, whs usually in their pockets, would ever enforce. And anyway they're perfectly wlling to pay the laughable "cost of doing business "fine." Next thing you know, you hear reports that this or that town RAN OUT OF WATER last week, or the reservoir was seen to have run COMPLETELY dry. And we all know this year has HARDLY been devoid of rain.

  • Rodney Hytonen

    What were these "Pipeliner" types doing in a "trouble spot" in the first place?
    Could it be their type is what MADE it a trouble spot?

    After all it's not like the oil&gas companies haven't not only invented the "type" but uconscionably greedy locals getting $1k/month for man camp trailer spots have guaranteed these hotbeds of out-of-state "men away from home" (or used to being homeless/shiftless,) and as they themselves just so eloquently described it, "makein yalls monthly check in one week...pickin girls up and havin a good time" -
    what could POSSIBLY go wrong?

    As part of the destruction of the country and especially WV, think (or just go and see in your town) what "segments of the economy" have been "stimulated" by the mentality they themseves proudly describe.. Good luck finding statiistics to prove it though (even though you see it with your own eyes) as these companies are making such enormous quick profits sending all our energy future overseas, and leaving our water supply, air and land PERMANENTLY carcinogenic, that they have easily bought up not only our last resort for safety -government regulation, but even our kids' future by destroying FACTS -scientific integrity- at the schools.

  • SG

    you know its not just oil and gas workers that get drunk and kill, your people do it before they came. it was an drunken misfortune and now two very good men who made poor choices have lost their lives as well as the other drunken poor choiced man who died. Sad day for all. our pipeline family is in mourning as well, RIP to your young man, and we pray for ours.

  • Larry

    I think long comments and drunken street brawling should both be banned.

  • pipeliners wife

    I am a proud pipeliners wife...how dare yall sit and judge and blame it on "pipeliners" it don't matter what job title you are...was yall there when that happened did yall witness it??? No shut the hell up...we pipeliners get it all the time for jealous people...if yall don't want us here on ohio or anywhere then close yallhalls mouths and go out there and work...yall would be cryin for moma...its a hot, bussy, dangerous job...it takes gutts and balls to be a pipeliner...the kid didn't need to be beatin to death but who to say killing him on purpose was the idea...it turned for the worse because a jealoud kid who girlfriend prolly left for a pipeline started something infortantly he couldn't finish...pipeliners always give to the community school toys for tots...we do lots of good...its a big family...and I for one am proud of my pipeline husband...and by the way we dont have blood on our hands...

    • Joe

      Uh....based on your comment, hoping you don't require reading instructions to correctly install pipeline or require writing updates to report potential problem areas.

  • Jimmy D

    If ya don't like us don't drive don't cook and burn wood in the winter. I want you to really think of us. Were hard working people. We play a big roll in wv. Yeh sure blame all us u must be an activist or a punk that daddy sends to school and u don't no anything. I'm from there and believe me your town has issues I'm a pipeliner my dad was a coalminer .im pipeline born .pipelinebred .all be a pipeliner till the day I'm dead if your gonna gripe. Really think of us this winter or when they put a well on your paw paws land and you want royalty money or when ya hike your tail to wheeling downs. Hope ya don't get cold .

  • LJ

    This is all so sad and tragic! This upsets me, my family, my friends, my co-workers, everyone that hears about the incident. I don't know any of the people involved. I am a Mom with a heart. I have grown children. I have a son. We are from out of town working on a pipeline job. We have been working relatively close to this area for the last 3 years. I've learned this area and met a lot of nice people. It is not impossible for the locals to get the jobs here, they just have to go through the proper channels to become a union member and worker. We all had to in order to work on the pipeline. There are many on our job that are local. They are not noticed because their plates look just like yours. We do things for the communities we work in. We donate tons of food and money for families in need, we donate back to school supplies, we spend our hard earned money in all your shops and stores. We pay rent and taxes. We actually care. It's just horrible that locals can be so narrow minded towards us all in general. For what it's worth,we are all devastated by what happened. We offer our sympathy for Kevin's family. I also feel bad for the families of the other 2 boys. I can't even imagine being in their place. Please don't hold us accountable for what has happened.

  • Amanda

    Pipeliners are just people out there trying to make a living just like everyone else. There r just ones who acts like idiots but that doesn't give everyone the right to hate all of them.