British scientist shot to death in bed while visiting girlfriend near Atlanta

An astrophysicist from the United Kingdom who was visiting his girlfriend in a suburb of Atlanta, Georgia, died last week when he was shot in the head by a stray bullet from outside the apartment where he was staying.

Matthew Willson, 31, died on Thursday after he was transported to a local hospital with a single gunshot wound to the head. Before the incident, Willson and his girlfriend, Katherine Shepard, were in bed asleep when they were awoken by a series of gunshots outside Shepard’s apartment.

After considering calling authorities, Shepard noticed Willson slumped over in the bedroom and realized he had been shot.

Brookhaven police said in a statement the incident appears to be a “random act involving individuals participating in the reckless discharge of” one or more firearms, and Willson was an innocent victim.

Willson had just arrived in the United States to visit Shepard, who he had met when he was a researcher at Georgia State University.

Shepard told The Sun Willson’s last words before he was shot were, “I’m sure they are just messing around,” referring to the shooters. Willson’s sister told local media someone was “just shooting a gun for fun. And they don’t even know that they’ve taken such a beautiful person from us.”




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Laura is a freelance writer out of Maryland and a mom of three. Her background is in political science and international relations, and she has been doing political writing and editing for 17 years. Laura has also written parenting pieces for the Today Show and is currently working on writing a collection of remarkable true stories about normal people. She writes for FBA because unbiased news is vital to unity, and readers deserve the facts free of opinion.

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