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NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — New Hanover County Deputies arrived at 7212 Morley Ct. around 9 o’clock Friday night after reports of possible gun shots fired. 27-year-old Phillip Michael Donaldson II was inside the home and in possession of a handgun and a long gun. He had fired the gun towards the ground on his property.

Deputies could not arrest Donaldson because he did not break the law.

“There is no North Carolina criminal law that says you cannot discharge a firearm on your own private property,” said Sgt. Jerry Brewer.

Deputies instead advised Donaldson of county ordinances against discharging a firearm in the county. He agreed that he would not discharge the firearm again.

However, Deputies were called back to the same address for possible shots fired early Saturday morning. This time, Donaldson was not as cooperative. Deputies who were in the neighborhood already arrived at Donaldson’s home to see him getting into his vehicle and driving away. Deputies and other units from the Pender County Sheriff’s Office, Surf City Police, and NCSHP pursued Donaldson on Highway 17 heading North towards Hampstead. All units were trying to stop Donaldson who was driving carelessly and recklessly. It was not until Donaldson ran his vehicle into a ditch near Surf City that Deputies could take him into custody.

Sgt. Jerry Brewer says Donaldson fired his weapon because of a domestic issue. The female who lives with Donaldson was not home at the time of either incident. Brewer also says that Donaldson was believed to be impaired and could be charged with a DWI in addition to careless driving and failure to stop.

Donaldson was taken to Pender County Jail pending charges. All New Hanover County charges are pending as well.

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