Local News

Girlfriend Arrested In Johnston Man's Shooting Death

Posted July 20, 2006

— The girlfriend of a Johnston County businessman has been arrested in connection with his shooting death.

Johnston County deputies took 26-year-old Tiffany Ann Bassett into custody and charged her with first-degree premeditated murder in the death of Donald "Keith" West.

According to authorities, Bassett called emergency personnel around 10 a.m. Tuesday, saying that West had been shot inside their Benson home. After West was found dead inside his bedroom, deputies and agents from the State Bureau of Investigation spent the day searching for evidence at the scene.

West was the president and chief executive officer of West-Tek Inc. of Smithfield, which provides security and private investigations in several area counties and has several spinoff companies throughout the United States. He was also a former Smithfield police officer.

According to authorities, this is not Bassett's first brush with the law. Sources said that she faces drug charges in at least two counties.

West and Bassett shared a baby daughter.

According to authorities, Bassett was arrested at the Johnston County Sheriff's Office after numerous interviews and the completion of West's autopsy. She is now being held without bond pending her first court appearance Thursday morning.

Police have not given a possible motive in the alleged homicide. West's death remains under investigation.

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