Spring Lake, NC -- Three children lost their father Sunday after deputies with the Harnett County Sheriff’s Office, looking for a different man, shot and killed him.
John Livingston, 33, was shot and killed in the early morning hours of Sunday as police were conducting an assault investigation. Police were not looking for Livingston, and the entire situation could have been avoided had they come back with a warrant like Livingston requested.
Livingston's roommate, Clayton Carroll told WNCN that he was shot multiple times during the altercation with officers who had no right to be there in the first place.
According to Carroll, deputies began knocking on the door around 3:30 am as they were looking for someone who no longer lived in the home. When Deputies asked Livingston if they could search his home, Livingston said “not without a search warrant,” according to Carroll.
Livingston then shut the door.
Having a man assert his fourth amendment right to be secure in his property was apparently too much for the deputy to handle.
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“The cop kicked in the door, got on top of him, started slinging him around beat him…” Carroll said.
Witnesses explain how deputies began spraying pepper spray and deploying a taser during the assault. They say that Livingston was not fighting back and merely trying to prevent the deputies from inflicting more harm on him.
During the struggle, Livingston attempted to remove the taser from the deputy's hand which caused the officers to fear for their lives.
“He (Livingston) barely had the Taser in his hand, but he had it where it was constantly going off and the officer I guess that spoke to him rolled over there, says he got the Taser and shot him in this position,” Carroll said.
Livingston died from the multiple gunshot wounds.
“That’s the blanket I kept putting on him and telling him to breathe until he was gone because I knew he wasn’t breathing anymore,” said Bristol Edge, a friend living in the home.
The officers involved have been placed on administrative leave, but their names have not been released.