Local News

What Happened at the Crime Scene

Posted September 25, 1997 12:00 a.m. EDT

— This whole thing started near exit 52 on Interstate-95, when Trooper Ed Lowry pulled over a speeding green Toyota Camry. The car had pulled over and was parkeded in front of the patrol cruiser.

Police say Trooper Lowry escorted the driver of the car, 17-year old Kevin Golphin, into the passenger seat of the cruiser.

As lowry was writing the ticket, dispatch informed him he had stopped a stolen car and that the teens might be suspects in an armed robbery in South Carolina. Lowry got out of his cruiser, then walked around to the passenger side to frisk and cuff Kevin Golphin.

At about that time, Cumberland County Deputy David Hathcock arrived on the scene and was ordered to detain Kevin's older brother Tilmon, who was still seated in the stolen car.

From that point, there are fewer known details.

Sheriff Earl "Moose" Butler believes Trooper Lowry and Kevin Golphin began to struggle. With Deputy Hathcock's attention diverted, Tilmon Golphin allegedly reached into the back seat of the Camry, grabbed an SKS assault rifle, and opened fire on the officers. Each was struck at least once by automatic gunfire in the torso.

Officials say the brothers then took the officers' guns and sped away north on I-95. The chase ended 19 miles later across the Harnett County line when the brothers crashed trying to exit the highway.

They fled on foot, and were taken into custody a short time later.

Police say there is also evidence Kevin Golphin shot Trooper Lowry with Deputy Hathcock's service revolver after both officers were shot with the assault rifle.

The sheriff's department is still asking for any witnesses to step forward with information to help their investigation.