ONLY ON WITN: Simpson Police Chief Critical Of D.A.'s Decision

A local police chief, placed on administrative leave after shooting a suspect, is now talking only to WITN News about his ordeal.

Simpson Chief John Waters, Jr. told us he is now re-evaluating his law enforcement career after what he calls a self-defense shooting back in October. This comes a day after the district attorney announced that he took the shooting case to the Pitt County Grand Jury.

The shooting happened October 1st off Nina Lane in Simpson after Waters got a call of a domestic disturbance and responded.

He's the only officer hired in the town of close to 500 people. Waters says before he could get out of the car, 22-year old William Osbun jumped on the hood and came after him. Osbun was unarmed.

Chief Waters says he was pinned in between the door jam and then fired at the man.

The chief says he's upset with the way District Attorney Clark Everett handled the case and is considering leaving law enforcement altogether after what he calls a traumatic ordeal. "I was left with a split second decision, it's my life or his life," the chief told us. "I got a family to go home to. I will say this, no job pays me enough to allow someone to kill me."

Osbun was in a coma, but recovered and has no recollection of the the events and now he's unable to walk, according to his attorney. Cynthia Everson claims the use of force was unjustified. "The law requires us to use proportional force so if someone strikes at me, the law allows me to strike back to protect myself. The law does not allow for me to shoot," said Osbun's attorney.

The SBIi was called in to investigate, and the district attorney says he had concerns about the officer firing on an unarmed man. Everett took the findings to a grand jury on Monday which ruled there wasn't enough evidence to proceed with charges against the chief.

"I think the system could have done a better job of standing up for me on that level." the police chief told us today.

Simpson Mayor David Boyd says they want to move forward to get police back in their community. The village will meet Thursday evening to decide what to do next.


Previous Story

A grand jury has decided not to indict a local police chief who the district attorney says shot an unarmed man nearly 2-1/2 months ago.

On Monday the Pitt County Grand Jury declined to indict Simpson Police Chief John Waters. Waters has been on paid administrative leave since the October 1st shooting of William Scott Osbun.

Osbun was seriously injured in the shooting that happened on Nina Lane. The State Bureau of Investigation handled the probe into the shooting and gave its report to the district attorney on November 18th.

District Attorney Clark Everett says Waters was called to a disturbance near the police department around 12:15 a.m. when Osbun jumped on the chief's patrol car. Everett says the man was wearing only a pair of shorts and Waters fired on him.

Everett told WITN News that he had concerns about the SBI findings and asked the grand jury to decide if the chief should be charged with the shooting or not.

WITN tried to contact Simpson's mayor today, but our phone calls were not returned. We do know there is a special meeting for the village Thursday evening to discuss personnel issues.

The 31-year-old Waters is Simpson's only police officer and has been there for six years..


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Anonymous on Jan 4, 2012 at 09:04 AM
    Welcome to eastern NC where one third of the people are mentally deficient, another third is just plain stupid, and the remaining third are rational reasonable people. These posts prove this. I can be UNARMED and still kill you graveyard dead. You do not have to be armed to be shot. The grand jury found NO BILL so everybody shut up.
  • by Anonymous Location: PItt County on Dec 22, 2011 at 09:07 AM
    The police car was not equipped with a dash board camera, so there is no video.
  • by Realist Location: Washington on Dec 19, 2011 at 11:53 AM
    The only reason that the Town of Simpson has a "police department" in the first place is so the hot-tempered mayor will have a personal body guard. Mayor Boyd has alienated multiple individuals, places of business, and even other law enforcement agencies. He just wants someone with a badge in his corner so that he can fly off the handle whenever he wants. Wise up, Simpson. Get rid of the one-man show that you call a police department, and let the mayor fend for himself.
    • reply
      by m on Dec 22, 2011 at 06:25 AM in reply to Realist
      There should be a law/rule against one man departments. It's not safe, secondly there should be a test of competency for so called Chief's.
  • by Luke Location: Upstate on Dec 17, 2011 at 09:08 AM
    Sounds like the chief defended himself when he had few other options. I would like to see those people who think he reacted too harshly put in that situation as a test (in a controlled test environment - not a real sitution) and see if they still feel the chief overreacted. I think they would see things differently.
    • reply
      by Sunshine on Dec 22, 2011 at 07:07 AM in reply to Luke
      Amen. If you don't want the law in your business then don't call 911. Call your local drug dealer for help. The Chief did his job - TO SERVE AND PROTECT. And he should have the expectation to be able to go home ALIVE.
  • by dumb on Dec 15, 2011 at 09:37 PM
    For the ones that are telling other people they r wrong how do u know ? Who r u to say Who is wrong and Who is got? Nobody was there But the officer the girl and the boy and im sorry But there was no mention of drugs in this story so Why r people talking drug thug
    • reply
      by just saying on Dec 17, 2011 at 10:21 PM in reply to dumb
      u have the right name dumb!Who is got?I am a neighbor,there were so many people there!and there were drugs,alcohol!!!the boy was a felon!he also was on probation,so why was he drinking? maybe the short girl that was there that night,why don't they take a look at her reputation! I feel sorry for everyone.....
  • by Donna on Dec 15, 2011 at 06:42 PM
    release the video from the car. Then the true story will be available. Surely with only ONE cop on duty there is video on his car. Then go to Raleigh and hire a lawyer who's not afraid to take the case. Scott will not walk again. Cops cannot be SCARED and shoot first they need to be aware of the situtation they are going into but shooting someone should be a last result not a first. if they do then they should be held accountable for their actions.
  • by Anonymous on Dec 15, 2011 at 06:12 PM
    Waters should be banned from carrying a badge forever! He missed!
  • by SE on Dec 15, 2011 at 05:02 PM
    I personally know Chief Water's, he is fair & honest, he is a very dedicated officer, what ppl don't know; Simpson may be a small town, you have the same problems as a larger city, violence is violence! When you arrive on a domestic call you never know what you are driving up to. Chief Water's felt his life was being threatened & he defended himself. Osbun was just another drug thug, his own worst enemy. Chief keep the faith and keep doing your job. Ppl don't the whole story so it is easy for them to critize. If I was in need of a PO I would be glad for you to come to my rescue!
    • reply
      by Sunshine on Dec 22, 2011 at 07:12 AM in reply to SE
      Amen! Chief Waters has dedicated a large portion of his time to Law Enforcement, to learn to train. He has given many hours of service for free to both the Fire Department and Law Enforcement. He has a heart of gold and don't think that he doesn't care about what happened that night or would have liked a different outcome. He said he feared for his life and I believe that. I wasn't there and most of the people commenting weren't there, but what I do know is that he is a fine officer!
  • by g-man Location: GREENVILLE on Dec 15, 2011 at 02:46 PM
    you did not kill him now he can sue
  • by Heard it all Location: Washington on Dec 15, 2011 at 01:47 PM
    All this is making me sick. The cop paniced and shot the man. He was probably in shock is the reason he waited so long to call ems. He realized what he had done, but it was to late so he had to have time to make up a story.We have to many bad cops out there. it makes it bad for the good law enforcement
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Dec 15, 2011 at 04:13 PM in reply to Heard it all
      Waters did NOT wait 45 minutes before calling it in. Don't know where you're getting your story from but you're wrong. Guess you didn't hear it all after all...
    • reply
      by me on Dec 15, 2011 at 06:32 PM in reply to Heard it all
      Try putting yourself in the Leo shoes and maybe you will not be so willing to judge.The bad guy was the one that made the wrong decision.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Dec 17, 2011 at 08:27 PM in reply to Heard it all
      yea he paniced,paniced,paniced yous dumm
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