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Shooting death of Seymour Johnson airman caps deadly month in Goldsboro

Posted August 1

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— Several questions still surround the death of a 32-year-old airman who was shot and killed in a Goldsboro parking lot early Sunday morning.

Emily Dupree is still shaken by the thought that she could have been the victim of the shooting. She had been in the Rail House Bar and Grill at the same time as Ryan Morgan, an active duty airman assigned to the Seymour Johnson Air Force Base.

“It’s scary because I come here all the time with my friends and have a good time with my friends and don’t think something like this will happen,” Dupree said.

Police said Morgan left the bar around 2:30 a.m. Sunday and was gunned down by his truck right in the heart of downtown Goldsboro. Investigators have canvassed the area, hoping surveillance video may yield some clues.

Police said that Morgan and the shooter did not know each other.

According to a police report, Morgan’s younger brother was with him the night of the shooting, but was not hurt. He said he wants everybody to remember that his brother spent nine years in the military, serving in both the Marines and the Air Force. Morgan served three tours of duty in Iraq.

Morgan’s shooting caps a deadly month in the small city of Goldsboro. Four people were murdered in the month of July alone. Police said they don’t believe any of the incidents are connected.

“I think we’re all concerned with this rash of violence that’s erupted, especially this past month with so many murders we’re not used to seeing,” said resident April Melrose.

Melrose grew up in Goldsboro and has invested in her own business in the city center. As a businesswoman, she worries what effect the uptick in crime will have on the city’s image.

“I’m afraid for negative response,” she said.

With eight murders in the first six months of 2016, the city is on track to nearly double last year’s homicide rate.

“It’s sad to hear about the lives lost in our own community, to me, it’s more sad than anything,” Melrose said.

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