UPDATE: Major involved in Brunswick County shooting returns to full duty


BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) – The Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office Professional Standards Division found that Major Laurie Watson’s actions in Tuesday’s shooting involving Mr. Lewis were “appropriate and consistent with North Carolina law and Sheriff’s Office policies”. Major Watson will return to full duty immediately.

According to Emily Flax with the Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office, crime scene evidence helped determine that the suspect’s gunshot wound was not the result of Major Watson firing her weapon.

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Additional information will be released by the SBI and District Attorney’s Office at the completion of their investigation.

The shooting happened in Brunswick County at 6 a.m. on Tuesday.

According to a press release, Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office detectives were searching a home on the 9000 block of Little River Road, NW in Ash, with the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations. The suspect was Bradley Barrett Lewis, 28.

ICE Spokesman Bryan Cox says deputies were helping U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement serve Lewis with a child pornography search warrant at his home. An accusation that shocked neighbors like Gregory Marks.

“Child pornography? That no, I didn’t see that coming. I didn’t. That seemed really odd,” Marks said.

While officers attempted to take the man into custody, he allegedly fired a single shot from a handgun.  Investigators say at the same time, Major Laurie Watson drew her weapon and also fired a single shot.

The suspect suffered what appears to be a gunshot wound to the head, and was transported to Grand Strand Medical Center, where he remains.

“I heard a pistol shot. Close. Right here. And you know we have hunters here. And I hear gunshots every now and again. But that was odd at 6:30,” Marks said.

It was a situation that Marks says he and other neighbors cannot believe happened.

“No I couldn’t have imagined this happening here. It’s a nice little spot. It’s a quiet spot. Besides our loud neighbors sometimes. But he was a nice guy. The thing is he was a nice person. He didn’t have people over. Never had anything loud. Just a nice dude,” Marks said.

It has not yet been determined whether the injury is the result of deadly force used by Major Watson, or from the man’s own weapon.

Officers say no one else got hurt.

The State Bureau of Investigations is conducting the investigation into the officer-involved shooting as per the requests of Sheriff John Ingram and District Attorney Jon David.

WWAY reached out to the Grand Strand Center in Myrtle Beach where Lewis was taken Tuesday night. They could not comment on his current condition.