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BOILING SPRING LAKES, NC (WWAY) — Boiling Spring Lakes Police say an internal review has cleared Ofc. John Thomas of any wrongdoing in Sunday’s incident that ended with a teen dead. The Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office says Dep. Samantha Lewis, who also responded, has been cleared following its internal review.

Meanwhile new information reveals the police officer who reportedly pulled the trigger was only on the scene for 70 seconds before shooting and killing Keith Vidal, 18.

“Could you send an officer over here. We have a son that has schizophrenia, and he’s not doing very good,” Mark Wilsey told a 911 operator Sunday.

Wilsey, Vidal’s father, called police Sunday afternoon for help with his son.

“He wants to fight his mother. He’s got a screwdriver,” Wilsey told the operator. “She’s scared to death of him.”

The event report shows the first Boiling Spring Lakes Police officer arrived at 1130 President Road at 12:34 p.m. followed by two more BSL officers and a Brunswick County Sheriff’s deputy. They reported a confrontation in the hallway but said everything was OK.

Records show Unit 104 from Southport arrived on scene at 12:48 p.m. Just 70 seconds later reports of shots fired come across emergency radio.

“I just heard gunshots,” someone reported.

Nearly two minutes passed before Unit 104 reported to dispatch defending his actions.

“I don’t know if you’ve been advised or not, but shots were fired,” the officer said. “I’ve had to defend myself against the subject.”

Seconds later the radio calls show that Vidal was taken into custody and being checked out by EMS.

Meanwhile an officer at the scene told dispatch, “We’re having problems with the family. They witnessed the shooting.”

Southport Police say Bryon Vassey is on paid administrative leave following the shooting. We went to his home today to try and speak with him. No one answered the door, but Boiling Spring Lakes Police arrived and asked us to leave.

Late this afternoon the attorney representing Thomas, who was cleared by the internal review, issued a statement. It said in part that Thomas and other responding officers followed the laws about using force.

The SBI continues to investigate.

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103 Comments on "BSL officer, deputy cleared in incident that ended in teen’s death; 911, radio traffic provide more detail"

Bryon Chandler
2015 years 10 months ago

Please note the officers that have been cleared are not the ones who allegedly shot this poor child. And paid leave is standard policy. Nothing can convince me he deserved to die, but you have to eliminate the innocent participants before you can get to the guilty.

2015 years 10 months ago

Appalling. I do hope the SBI intends to thoroughly investigate and is not swayed by the “blue code of silence”.

I’m sure this good officer has his bigotry against the mentally ill, and was completely untrained to properly deal with such, and therefore needs much more than a “paid vacation”. He needs to find new training and employment altogether, perhaps scrubbing pots at Butner Federal Correctional Complex near Raleigh.

2015 years 10 months ago

The cops have already circled their wagons to protect their “brothers”, and we’ll never find out what really happened. As soon as the cop radioed in with, “I’ve had to defend myself against the subject”, you know the fix was in. TWO MINUTES after the shooting, he was already creating a record of his “innocence.” How cold is that? A lot colder than the kid he killed.

And when has an “internal review” EVER been completed in THREE DAYS? Answer: when it’s a complete sham. By cops, for cops.

Our cops are increasingly militarized and hyped up on their own authority and the power of their badge. For the first time in my life, I’m afraid of them.

2015 years 10 months ago

First off let me express my sympathies to the family of the teen that was shot down in cold murder. This should have never led to the death of someone because the officer was “aggravated with the situation”. This story is now national news as Huffington Post is reporting on it.

Second, lets go back several months ago where Wilmington, NC officers shot 4 black men and killed three. Two in front of the pizza hut after a robbery and one after a car chase after the suspect had wounded a police officer in the leg days before at a traffic stop. Why is it when a young white man is shot by the police, Wilmington and surrounding areas cry JUSTICE for his wrongful death but when three black men are shot down then its “good riddance, police doing their jobs, thugs deserved to die”.

The young white man had a weapon just as the black men did here in Wilmington but yet no outrage or hateful slurs against him or his family. The black men had weapons but those thugs deserved to die.

Wilmington, you are showing your true colors.

guest 1441965
2015 years 10 months ago

Then how do you explain the comment. I do not have time for this and BAMMMMM. You are so wrong.


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