Two North Carolina sheriff deputies were shot near Boone, and a standoff with the alleged gunman is ongoing. The sheriff's office referred to a wellness check on Wednesday morning because the homeowner and his family failed to show up for work or return phone calls, said a statement received by WBTV from the Watauga County Sheriff's Office.
North Carolina sheriff deputies shot while doing a wellness check
"When deputies entered the house, they were met with gunshots from an unidentified person. Two deputies were shot and injured. One deputy was flown to Johnson City Medical Center for treatment after being rescued from the scene. The other deputy is also on the site. At this time, the condition of the deputy on the scene is unclear."
Johnson City Medical Center is located in eastern Tennessee. According to the statement, the alleged gunman is barricaded in the house and occasionally shoots at law enforcement officers.
Residents in the area have been evacuated. The Boone Police Department tweeted that it is giving support to Watauga County deputies in Brown's Chapel, CNN via MSN reported.
A resident saw two deputies were shot as they arrived
According to a news release from the sheriff's office, deputies were called to a home in Boone at 9:44 a.m. after the resident, and his family failed to show up for work or return phone calls. Deputies approached the house and were fired upon, said the news release.
Law enforcement has surrounded the house, according to the sheriff's office. As sheriff's deputies pulled up in front of the house across the street, Clarence Wilson, 78, was on the porch of his home in Boone.
According to ABC News, Wilson said gunfire erupted after the deputies appeared. He explained, "Then they ordered me to get back in the house and wait."
Wilson said that he saw deputies removing a man from the residence. He said, "I don't know whether it was a deputy or who it was. All I was concerned with was keeping myself safe."
Around noon, Wilson said he heard the second round of gunfire. He added that police were on the scene for more than four hours. Wilson explained that the area is a "real quiet neighborhood" as many residents are retirees like him, and they are "not used to all this."
All of the family's cars were outside when the deputies arrived. When they entered, an anonymous gunman opened fire, shooting two of them, said the police.
At around 1 p.m., a rescue helicopter took off, taking one victim to the Johnson City Medical Center. The other was already inside the house at 5 p.m. Residents were advised to lock their doors and windows and seek refuge inside.
According to a video from the scene, police had blocked Chapel Hills Road and were staging in the church parking lot while trying to secure the location. A lockdown was also imposed at a nearby Mount Vernon school, though parents could pick up their children. The home was surrounded by police, who said they rescued nearby residents. As of 5 p.m., the standoff was still going on, Fox News reported.