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Suspect in North Carolina shooting of 6-year-old girl and 2 adults in custody

3 shot after ball rolled into neighbor's yard
3 people shot after basketball rolled into neighbor's yard 02:20

Two adults and one child were shot in Gastonia, North Carolina, on Tuesday after a basketball rolled into a man's yard and he allegedly opened fire on them. The suspect, Robert Louis Singletary, turned himself in to authorities in Florida on Thursday, the Gaston County Police Department said.

The incident unfolded around 7:44 p.m. on Tuesday when Gaston police received a call about a man firing a gun outside homes in his neighborhood. Singletary, 24, of Gastonia, North Carolina, was determined to be the shooter. 

An adult male and his child were seriously wounded during the shooting spree and taken to a Charlotte hospital. One adult woman was grazed by a bullet and another man was shot but not injured. 

Detectives secured warrants for Singletary on four counts of attempted first-degree murder, two counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury and one count of possession of a firearm by a felon. 

Singletary turned himself in to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office in Tampa, Florida, on Thursday evening, the Gaston County Police Department said in a statement.

The police department is still offering a $1,000 reward for information that aids the investigation, which is ongoing.

GCPD identified the adult victims in the shooting as William James White and Ashley Hildebrand. White was in serious condition as of Thursday night. Hildebrand suffered a "grazing wound," the police department said. The child — who was shot and has not been identified because they are a minor — has been treated and released from the hospital, police said. 

A third adult, Derrick Kenneth Prather, was shot at but wasn't hit, GCPD said.

Prior to the suspect turning himself in, Gaston Police Chief Stephen M. Zill said in a news release that his agency had partnered with the U.S. Marshals Regional Fugitive Task Force to assist in the search for Singletary.

"I want to say to the people of Gaston County — this sort of violence will not stand," Zill said.

According to CBS affiliate WBTV, the child who was shot is White's 6-year-old daughter. She told the station: "The bullet came back and the bullet went in my cheek," said the girl, whose name is being withheld for her safety.

"I want him to go to jail forever," she said.

A neighbor who witnessed the shooting said it was shocking. 

"They were playing basketball and a ball rolled into his yard and they went to go and get it," Jonathan Robertson told WBTV. "It was just crazy."

This shooting is the latest involving violent consequences after ordinary mistakes, reigniting debates about stand your ground laws.

A white man claimed self-defense after he shot a Black teenager this week when he rang the doorbell of his Kansas City home and a 20-year-old woman looking for a friend's house in upstate New York was fatally shot by a homeowner when she went to the wrong address.

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