Man killed in Hickory officer-involved shooting identified

HICKORY, NC (WBTV) – The person killed in an officer-involved shooting in Hickory Friday morning has been identified by police as 33-year-old William David Whetstone.

Hickory police said they were executing a search warrant for narcotics at a home on 12 Street Place Northwest when they encountered Whetstone, who the warrant involved.

“While officers gave Whetstone verbal commands not to move, Whetstone reached between the cushions of a sofa producing a handgun and pointing it at officers,” police said.

Tanika Johnson said Whetstone is no stranger to police.

“They’ve raided this house for drugs,” Johnson said.

Whetstone has an extensive criminal history. In 2008, he was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon. He was convicted in 2010.

A few years earlier, in 2005, he was charged with assault on a female on two different occasions. Both charges led to convictions.

On top of those crimes, Whetstone has been convicted on numerous drug possession and trafficking charges.

Johnson said she has no idea how someone with such a violent record is allowed to roam free in her neighborhood.

She also said she is shaken up because her son or her friend who lives a few doors down could have been hit with a stray bullet.

“My son got on the bus four minutes before the shootout, and her son got on the bus two minutes before,” Johnson said.

A family friend of Whetstone, Crystal McDonald, showed up to the scene. She told WBTV she let Whetstone borrow her car this morning so he could go apply for jobs.

“I gave my heart out, because he has two small children and I was in hopes he would find him a job today and do better with his life,” McDonald said.

Officer David H. Lee and Sgt. Randy Isenhour are the officers police said discharged their weapons during the shooting.

EMS pronounced Whetstone dead at the scene.

Another officer, Sgt. Rodney Harris, was shot in the arm. He went to the hospital and is expected to be OK.

The State Bureau of Investigation is investigating the shooting. The District Attorney was also called to the scene.

Lee and Isenhour have been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation, which is standard protocol.

“This is a tragic situation and our thoughts and prayers are with everyone involved,” Chief Thurman Whisnant.

Copyright 2017 WBTV. All rights reserved. 

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