CHARLOTTE — A new search warrant has revealed more details about the investigation into a shootout that killed a man inside his Steele Creek apartment on Saturday. Charlotte-Mecklenburg police later identified the man as beloved DJ, father and husband James Freiberg.
CMPD said their officers heard shots fired at around 3 a.m. and headed toward the sound. They went to an apartment complex on Hillgrove Lane, which is off Steele Creek Road and just north of Westinghouse Boulevard. When they arrived, police said they found several shell casings in the parking lot and Freiberg, 48, inside his apartment with life-threatening injuries.
Paramedics confirmed he died there.
A search warrant said two groups of people started shooting at each other in the apartment’s parking lot and multiple cars were involved, according to 911 callers. Police said Freiberg did not know the two groups and was not associated with either. Investigators believe Freiberg was hit by a stray bullet while looking outside his bedroom window, according to the warrant.
A short time after officers arrived, police said they found out a second victim in the shooting had shown up at a hospital in Pineville, according to the warrant. He had been shot in his arm, officers said.
In the warrant, police said they found damaged cars and buildings in the area and blood in a breezeway of one of the buildings, in addition to the shell casings in the parking lot.
One witness said that before the shooting, she saw someone who was in a fight in the parking lot, according to the warrant. She was near a white BMW with other people during the fight. Witnesses said it was this dispute that led to the shoutout.
Once the shooting started, records show a witness said she and other people involved in the shooting ran to an apartment on Glenbridge Way. At least three witnesses told detectives that people involved in the shooting ended up in the same apartment. When detectives and officers tried to get in touch with the people inside the apartment, the warrant said someone came outside and claimed he was not involved. Detectives could hear more people inside the apartment and one person tried to jump out of the window, but when they saw police, they retreated back inside, officers said.
The warrant concluded based on the information they had so far, officers have probable cause to believe that witnesses and or suspects involved in Freiberg’s murder are inside that apartment. Detectives believe evidence related to the shooting is likely inside this apartment as well, officers said.
A neighbor, who doesn’t want to be identified, told Channel 9 she woke up in the middle of the night and saw glass on the floor. She showed us where a bullet zipped through a window and into her living room.
“This neighborhood is just getting dangerous,” she said. “I feel here, unsafe. We just got in this house like three years ago. It’s made me think if I want to keep living in this neighborhood, in this zone.”
She recalled the moments she heard the shots ring out to Channel 9.
“I heard gunfire kind of coming down my hallway, or at least right there at it, and then down this way he ran continuing to shoot,” she said. “I don’t know where the person was hit, did he hit him and continue running and shooting? I could tell it was gunfire.”
Another neighbor said she has been worried about her safety ever since the apartment’s entrance gate broke.
“It’s very concerning. That could have been anybody,” Sarah Thompson said. “It has not been working for quite some time.”
No arrests have been made in the case.
Homicide detectives believe the suspect’s car is a dark grey or black dodge Charger or Challenger. The car has extensive damage to its front. The right-front headlight is out and the car could have bullet holes in it, police said. The car was last seen on Highway 160 heading toward Interstate 485.
Anyone with information is asked to call 704-432-TIPS and speak directly to a homicide detective. Detective Jones is the lead detective assigned to this case. Information can also be left anonymously by calling Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600 or by clicking here.
(WATCH BELOW: ‘Made you feel special’: Man killed by stray bullet during shootout was husband, father)
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