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May 19, 2022
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.”
ARTICLE: LAURA SPIVAK
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: STANDARD.CO.UK