Local News

Bunn High School Student Fatally Shot

Posted May 10, 2007
Updated May 11, 2007

— A 17-year-old Bunn High School junior's estranged boyfriend gunned her down in her front yard Thursday afternoon when she arrived at the home where she lived with her aunt and the couple's 2-year-old son, Franklin County sheriff's deputies said.

Sheriff Pat Green said Elvira Hernandez had sworn out an arrest warrant against Christopher Steven Thomas, 20, of Louisburg, a week ago, saying he had threatened her. Deputies had been unable to find him to arrest him, however.

Thomas, who also goes by the name Christopher Harris, was waiting in a car when Hernandez got off a school bus, Green said.

“She took off running, running to the front porch, to the front door, and he jumped out of his car,” the sheriff said. “The car kept running, rolling down the driveway. He got out with a shotgun and shot her in the back. She fell to the ground. He ran up and shot her point-blank.”

Hernandez died on the front steps of the home at 664 Ferrells Bridge Road, near Loblolly Circle. Investigators said the couple's 2-year-old son was inside the house, along with her aunt. Hernandez's school backpack lay by the four steps leading from the lawn to the porch.

Thomas tried to get inside, Green said. He could not get in and then turned the shotgun on himself, Green said.

Officials initially reported that Thomas had been airlifted to Duke University Hospital in Durham, but Green later said he had been taken to WakeMed. His condition was not immediately available.

The shooting happened shortly after 3 p.m., officials said.

Thomas had attended Bunn High School, they said.

“It's not ever easy. This is senseless and it's tragic,” county school Superintendent Bert L’Homme said.

Bunn High School describe Hernandez as a quiet teenager, but a wonderful person to be around.

“When you spend 7½ hours every day with kids and spend time and you lose one of them, it's difficult,” said Bunn Principal George Kelley.

Grief counselors will be on hand at Hernandez's school to help students cope with the loss of their classmate.


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  • Harley Girl May 11, 2007

    They have to have probable cause to go into a residence a search.

  • have patience May 11, 2007

    To everyone on here, unless you have lived it, you have no idea what makes a person stay or why it happens. The way it seems today with nothing but a restraining order to "help" us, better to stay than to p them off and end up like this. I pray for the family and leave the criticism for your journals and blogs. And I hope that teens and adults do see the signs of their friends and reach out to them. They need someone to talk to and cry to when they feel like there is no way out.

  • ncnative4sure May 11, 2007

    No amount of counseling or protective orders can protect someone from someone whom has a gun & the intent to harm them...
    The only true protection a victim may have is if the abuser is locked away behind bars...With no bond to be released or if the abuser ends up dead...I know 1st hand...19 yrs ago my sister was taken from me by the hands of her husband...In the police parking lot in Collierville , TN...He shot & killed her then turned the gun on himself (he also died)...Leaving 2 young sons to grow up without their parents...The victims of abuse are getting younger every day...I truely feel that schools should have a class in place to teach students of anger management & abuse of all kinds...To which all students must attend... It's a step to help stop abuse...My heart goes out to the families of all abused victims..."God-Speed"

  • PDMARTIN May 11, 2007

    Love my boys

    They would have to have a search warrant to get inside the house. All they had was an arrest warrant.

  • Lexus-1 May 11, 2007

    Surely we are all blaming this young man for his acts of misdeed and perhap violence. But we must not forget that life has two sides and it was a abusives relationship on both ends she just was able to get in the motion for herself and he could not handle what she did.

    You my delete this comment, but the facts are ture. Just because some women may have a pretty face and sweet smile, they can be the most deceiving and dangerous creatures.

  • headlong May 11, 2007

    Love My Boys...Yes they said on the News this afternoon his Mother lied about him staying there...does that mean she will be charge with obstruction??? The Police were trying to serve him with the "restraining order"

  • Love my boys May 11, 2007

    At least the sheriff's department can find him now. What happened to searching the house? It was stated this morning the sheriff's department went to his mother's house looking him and she lied about him being there. Can't they go in and search for themselves? Or am I being unreasonable?

  • K9Tucker.LoveMYcop May 11, 2007

    Must you all blame the parents or the LEO's. Neither did this to her. Blame the one who actually did it.

    God Bless this child and her family.

  • sunshine69 May 11, 2007

    I went to Bunn High School from 86-89. The school had nothing in place then to help girls recognize they were in a abusive relationships. I had parents who taught me how to respect others and I had rules I had to follow at home. Still I ended up in a abusive relationship while in the 9th grade. I also ended up marrying my abusive boyfriend at 19 and it took me 8 years to get out safely. I got restraining orders, which did no good. It could take up to 1 -2 hours for the Sheriff's department to respond when he violated the "so called restraining" order. Many times during those 8 years I feared for my life. People need to see that kids spend more time at school with these abusive guys than at home with our parents. The schools have to be more active in teaching students how to respect themselves. Low self esteem drives girls like me to look for guys that have strong personalities and are dominant so that we can be part of the popular crowd. My heart goes out to Elvira's son and to every g

  • lotsofivy May 11, 2007

    I hate this so badly and my thoughts are with this family.