Five people died, including two North Carolina sheriff’s deputies, during a welfare check that ended in a violent standoff, according to authorities. The Watauga County Sheriff’s Department said Wednesday that two deputies, Sgt. Chris Ward and K-9 Deputy Logan Fox, were called to a home in Hardaman Circle around 9:45 a.m. after the homeowner and his family didn’t turn up for work or answer any phone calls. When the deputies entered the house, someone opened fire—striking them both. Fox died at the scene, while Ward was taken to a local hospital and later died of his injuries. “The individual suspected of killing the two officers is also suspected of killing two civilians in the residence. The names of the civilians are not being released at this time,” a statement from the sheriff’s department read.
Morganton Department of Public Safety Maj. Ryan Lander told The News Herald that authorities believe the shooter killed himself after the hours-long standoff. Residents in the area, about two hours outside of Charlotte, were ordered to stay inside with their doors and windows locked.