Murder suspect out of jail on pretrial release accused of shooting 2 Robeson County deputies

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Wednesday, November 8, 2023
Murder suspect accused of shooting 2 Robeson County deputies
The two Robeson County deputies were shot in the area of Old Red Springs Road outside of Maxton.

MAXTON, N.C. (WTVD) -- This is an ongoing story. For the latest developments, click here.

Two deputies were shot multiple times while serving a warrant on a man who was out of jail on bond after being accused of multiple felonies -- including murder.

The event began around 9:30 a.m. when deputies went to serve a warrant on the suspect, Shawn Tobin Locklear Jr., at his home on Lois Ann Dr. near Maxton. Sheriff B.L. Wilkins said the suspect ran into the woods as soon as he saw the deputies arrive.

Deputies chased after him, eventually finding him hiding behind a tree. The sheriff said his deputies told Locklear to surrender; instead, he jumped out from behind the tree and started firing.

At least one of the deputies fired back at him.

Two deputies, Jonathan Walters and Kaelin Locklear, were seriously injured in the shootout. Walters was shot in his leg; the sheriff said the bullet wound was near the deputy's femoral artery. Locklear was shot in his torso and shrapnel was reportedly near his heart.

Jonathan Walters (left) and Kaelin Locklear (right)

Walters has been with the sheriff's office since March 2020. Locklear has been with the sheriff's office since May 2021.

Shawn Locklear then made his way into the deputies' patrol car, ran over a deputy and sped off.

He was caught several miles down the road and emergency responders took him to the hospital because he too had been shot multiple times.

Wilkins said body cameras caught the entirety of the ordeal. It's unclear at this time whether the video will be released or when.

As for Shawn Locklear, Wilkins said he should never have been out from behind bars in the first place.

"I am 100 percent disgusted by certain parts of the judicial system," he said.

In March 2022, Locklear was arrested in connection with an armed robbery. He made bond and was out of jail awaiting further court dates when he got in trouble again. In November 2022, he was arrested on murder charges. Six months later, in May of 2023, he made bond again and was given pretrial release.

"Here we are...praying that we don't have a dead deputy," Wilkins said. "Yes our jail is full, but I can make room for a murder suspect. I have never seen it in such a way where murderers are walking around in this county like they are. There are dozens that are doing it right now. A plastic bracelet on your leg for pretrial release means nothing."

A woman who lives near where the shooting happened told the ABC station in Florence, South Carolina, that she and her partner were in bed when they heard a flurry of gunshots. They went outside their home and found the two injured deputies.

The woman said she sent a friend to get towels to use to put pressure on the wound of one of the deputies, in an attempt to stop the bleeding.

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