CONCORD, N.C. - Concord police announced Wednesday that they have charged Exavier Williams with voluntary manslaughter weeks after a man was shot to death in the parking lot of Carolinas HealthCare System Northeast in Concord.
Police said Williams and Damon Bruce were visiting a shared acquaintance at the hospital on Feb. 6 when an altercation between the two happened in the parking lot, which led to Bruce being shot.
Cabarrus County paramedics were nearby and gave Bruce immediate medical attention. He was taken into the hospital for treatment but did not survive.
"I'm just so sorry and I'm so sorry to his family and his friends,” said Debra Phillips, a friend and neighbor of Bruce. “He was a great neighbor. He helped me a lot in my yard. He was very kind."
In a statement, hospital officials say security and police responded immediately, and, “for the safety of our patients, teammates and visitors, a hospital alert was made and the emergency department was placed on restricted access for a limited time during the investigation."
Williams was initially questioned and released, but was arrested in Charlotte Wednesday morning, police said. He is currently in the Cabarrus County Jail under a $120,500 bond.
Atrium Health has worked since August to increase security at its hospitals, but the shooting happened in the parking lot, yards from the ER.
Police said Bruce was the only target, but have not mentioned a motive.
"Well I was shocked, especially happening right here because I work right over here in the mall here and I was just really shocked, and sad,” Concord resident Linda Kidd said.
"As long as I have been with the Concord Police Department, I don't ever remember responding to an incident that occurred in the parking lot or any other place on campus," Maj. Robert Ledwell said.
Chopper 9 Skyzoom flew over the scene and saw crime tape cordoning off the parking lot, with officers collecting evidence.
Investigators had asked people heading to the hospital to use an alternate entrance because of the large police presence in the area.
"This is supposed to be a safe place for people to come, and now it's not," hospital visitor Tyler Moore said.
Moore said nurses told him about the shooting when he came to visit his fiancée. He said staff seemed shaken.
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