PLYMOUTH, WASHINGTON COUNTY - A father and son are accused of shooting at a vehicle full of people in Washington County over the weekend. However, the father claims the victims shot first.
According to Plymouth Police, the suspects are 58-year-old James Gallagher and 21-year-old Robert Gallagher.
Police said they got a call at about 10:39 p.m. Saturday about shots being fired on the 100 block of Roanoke Avenue near Plymouth High School. Officers said the shots were fired into a Jeep Cherokee, with three people inside, parked in a driveway.
From talking with the three victims, investigators said they believe a fight had broken out between Robert and two of the victims prior to the shooting. Robert then walked to his home nearby. A few minutes later, he and his father stepped out onto their porch and shot into the direction of the occupied Jeep, police said.
The father, James, told Newschannel 12 he was woken up by a gunshot, which his son claimed came from the alleged victims. "He says I just got beat up by three guys and they're shooting at me. Get up, get your gun, we gotta, we gotta stop this," he said.
Robert hit the Jeep several times, as well as a second vehicle in the driveway, said investigators. But no one was injured.
"My son fired a couple shots, I fired once into the ground, trying to get their attention and holler at 'em to stop. Another shot come back this way," said James.
Police said they arrested both James and Robert and seized two shotguns.
James claims he was simply protecting himself and his son. "When they start coming into my property, beating up my son with handguns, I'm going to defend my property. To the death," he said.
Newschannel 12 contacted two people inside the home where the Jeep had been parked. They declined to comment.
Robert has been charged with one count of discharging a weapon into occupied property, three counts of assault with a deadly weapon, two counts of injury to personal property, and one count of discharging a firearm in the city limits. He was given a $12,000 secured bond.
James has been charged with one count of assault with a deadly weapon and one count of discharging a firearm in the city limits. He was issued a $1,000 secured bond.
- Son kills father, himself in murder-suicide in Morehead City
- One dead, two injured after early-morning shooting in New Bern
- Coast Guard calls off search for missing Hyde County boaters off Georgia
- Dudley man shot, killed early Saturday; Goldsboro Police investigating
- Travelers out in bunches for Memorial Day weekend