Deputies: Dispute over dog leads to fatal shooting in Person County

TIMBERLAKE, NC (WTVD) -- The Person County Sheriff's Office has charged a man with first-degree murder after he allegedly shot his neighbor in the Timberlake area.

It happened Wednesday afternoon on Flatwoods Road near Antioch Church Road.

Deputies said the shooting apparently stemmed from a dispute over 43-year-old John Turner's dogs running onto 35-year-old Nick Parker's property. Parker shot a dog and then later Turner allegedly shot him.

"There was some type of argument, a dog was actually shot prior to this incident, and then we get a call about shots being fired," explained Person County Sheriff Dewey Jones.

Parker's family told ABC11 that the men had a long-running dispute and Turner's animals running wild had been an ongoing source of friction. They contend if Parker shot Turner's dog, it was because the animal posed a threat.

"My brother would not do nothing like that unless it was for a reason," said Parker's brother Chris.

The family said after Parker shot the dog, he returned his gun to his home and had to face Turner unarmed.

Didn't have a weapon!" said Parker's mother Charlesina Winstead - who alleged her son was shot 7 or 8 times.

Winstead suggested the shooting was racially motivated.

"This guy's been hating my son for a long, long time," she said. "It's a hate crime. It really is a hate crime."

But Turner's long-time friend Brian Dickinson told ABC11 that's not how it was.

"He's not prejudiced. This is not a hate crime. This is just something that steamed up between two neighbors that didn't get along," said Dickinson.

Turner was being held in the Person County jail without bond.

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