Teen faces 40 charges after shooting passing cars with 'high-powered pellet rifle' along Highway 264 in Wilson County

WILSON COUNTY, N.C. (WTVD) -- A 14-year-old is facing 40 charges after being accused of shooting passing vehicles with a 'high-powered pellet rifle' along Highway 264 in Wilson County.

Wilson County Sheriff's Office said the teen faces 20 counts of discharging a barreled weapon into an occupied vehicle and an additional 20 counts of damage to personal property.

RELATED: 5 cars damaged, possibly shot while driving down Highway 264 in Wilson County

The sheriff's office said it received calls from drivers being shot at as early as Wednesday afternoon. On Thursday morning, officials said the sheriff's office received additional calls in reference to cars being shot along Hwy 264 near mile marker 38 near the Mamie Road area.

Detectives determined the shots were being fired from the south side of the eastbound travel lane of US 264. The bullets hit the body and windows of the passenger sides of the vehicles. During an investigation, detectives said they found two make-shift ground blinds using natural shrubbery near Hwy 264 that the teen allegedly used to hide during the shootings.

Detectives said they also recovered several rounds of BB and pellet ammunition near the roadway.

No one was injured during the shootings.

The Wilson County Sheriff's Office was denied a secure custody order from court officials and the juvenile was released to his parents.

"The Wilson County Sheriff's Office was working on the case since the first report was made to us," said Wilson County Sheriff Calvin Woodard. "At no time was Highway 264 rendered unsafe due to constant patrols and covert surveillance in the area. Details of the investigation needed to be confidential so that evidence could not be destroyed and the person involved in these immoral acts could be located and arrested. The detectives and administration worked throughout the day and night following a multitude of leads; however, "old-fashion" legwork was the key to locating the area where the victim's vehicles were struck, the alleged weapon, and additional evidence to solidify the case.

"The Sheriff's Office appreciates the assistance of the NC Highway Patrol's Airwing and Troop C5 who flew the area on Thursday for additional coverage and the North Carolina SBI," Woodard added. "Deputies will continue patrols as they always have and we will always work to assure the safety of the citizens and those who commute each and every day throughout Wilson County. I am, however, very disappointed that the victims went through this and that with the time placed in the investigation, the juvenile walks. Deputies will continue patrols as they always have and we will always work to assure the safety of the citizens and those who commute each and every day throughout Wilson County ... we will remain vigilant in protecting the citizens of Wilson County."
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