FIRST ON 3: Neighbors doubt shooting that killed teen was an accident
CHADBOURN, NC (WWAY) — It’s been three days since a teenager was killed and two other people hurt by a single bullet in Chadbourn. Neighbors say not only are they surprised by what happened, but also that they believe it was not an accident.
“She took two breaths. She took one, and then she took another one, and I knew that second breath… she was gone,” said neighbor Donald Evans, who rushed to the scene of the shooting to give CPR after hearing the gunshot Friday.
There are blood stains on the lawn and a bullet hole in the window, but still no answers about what happened Friday morning on East 3rd Avenue in Chadbourn.
Neighbors say Jasmine Danielle Thar, 16, from Charlotte, died after what police are reportedly labeling an “accidental” shooting.
According to the Whiteville News Reporter James Anthony Blackwell, who lives across the street from where the victims were shot and who neighbors say has a military background, told investigators his .308 Remington rifle accidentally fired once as he took it out of a case in his home.
Neighbors are not so sure.
“That rifle had to be aimed,” neighbor Sylvia Evans said. “I mean it just don’t go off straight like that and straight out the window from the case to straight up in a row, you know what I’m saying? Some kind of way, something’s not right.”
Neighbors say Thar was with her cousin Jahmesha McMillian and her aunt Treka McMillian, when they were leaving a relative’s home on their way to Myrtle Beach to do some last-minute Christmas shopping. Chadbourn Police say that’s when Blackwell’s rifle fired hitting all three women.
“I don’t see how it could be an accident,” Donald Evans said. “I don’t see how an accident could shoot three people and be labeled as an accident. I just do not see how it could be done that way.”
Jahmesha McMillian is still in Columbus County Regional Medical Center and is listed in stable condition. Treka McMillian was treated and released.
The Whiteville News Reporter says Blackwell is cooperating with investigators, and no charges have been filed against him at this time.
We tried to get more information from Chadbourn Police today. They said Chief Steven Shaw was the only person who could release information. He did not return several calls. When we went by the police department today, no one was there.
More: continued here