Georgia Shooting: British man Matthew Willson shot through wallon January 22, 2022 at 5:54 pm

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Police are treating Matthew Willson’s death as a homicide, following gunfire from a nearby flat.

Dr Matthew Willson

Image source, Brookhaven Police

An English astrophysicist was killed by a stray bullet that travelled through a wall and hit him in his bed, US authorities have said.

Dr Matthew Willson, 31, from Chertsey, Surrey, was found with a single gunshot wound to the head.

Police were called to an apartment in Brookhaven, Atlanta, at 02:00 local time (07:00 GMT) last Sunday.

Sgt Jake Kissel, from the Brookhaven Police Department, said the shooting was believed to have been a random act.

There have been no arrests so far.

‘Tragic’

Sgt Kissel said the stray bullet that hit Dr Willson travelled less than 100 yards (91m) and entered through an exterior wall of the apartment.

“The two apartment complexes where the gunfire took place and where Matthew was staying, they’re separated by a patch of woods, so they back up to each other,” he said.

“We’re saying it’s the reckless discharge of firearms from one apartment complex and the stray bullet travelled through the woods and entered his apartment.”

Clairmont Road in Brookhaven, Georgia

Image source, Google

He said investigators were following up on all leads, adding: “We’re receiving tips from the public and our investigator team has been working around the clock to ensure that we’re tracking down the individuals that are responsible.”

Sgt Kissel said an innocent bystander being struck by a stray bullet was the first incident “of its kind” in Brookhaven and was an “alarming” and “tragic event”.

He added: “Even though we believe that it was a random act and complete reckless discharging of firearms, we’re still approaching it as a homicide.”

Dr Willson was taken to a local trauma centre but died of his injuries.

He was reportedly in the US visiting his girlfriend Katherine Shepard.

The Foreign Office said it was “supporting the family of a British man following his death”.

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