Ex-NFL player kills 5 in South Carolina including doctor, 2 grandchildren: cops

Source: South Carolina State; MEGA

Apr. 8 2021, Updated 2:26 p.m. ET

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A former NFL player is accused of murdering five people in South Carolina, then killing himself, according to reports. 

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Phillip Adams was the gunman in a "mass shooting" on April 7 in York County, Carolina. The county is outside of the Charlotte metropolitan area.

Around 4:45 p.m., York County deputies responded to a home for a reported shooting that involved multiple people, according to the York County Sheriff's Office. 

Deputies launched a search for the suspect, who they described as a black man wearing a hooded sweatshirt and camo pants. 

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A few hours later, deputies reported they found the suspect in a nearby house. He was dead in a bedroom in the home from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. 

Five people were killed in the shooting, including Robert Lesslie and his wife, Barbara. Two of the couple's grandchildren were also killed in the shooting. James Lewis was working at the home and died of gunshot wounds. 

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A supervisor of Lewis called 911 to report that one of his workers called him to say he's been shot and to call 911. A recording of the call was played during a press conference on April 8.

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York County Sheriff Kevin Tolson said officers arrived to find Lewis and another air conditioner worker outside the home and both were shot. The injured person was taken to the hospital. 

Deputies then went into the home and found the other victims. 

Tolson said deputies are trying to figure out why the shooting happened. He added that Tolson forced his way into the home. 

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Lesslie was a well-known doctor in the area. He worked for 25 years in emergency rooms in the Charlotte area and served as medial director of the emergency department at Piedmont Medical Center.

He was married to Barbara for more than 40 years, according to a biography on his website. They had four children and nine grandchildren. 

The family released a statement Tolson read during an afternoon press conference. 

"We are truly in the midst of the unimaginable. The loss we are suffering can not be uttered at this time," Tolson read.  

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The family said they were putting their faith in God and their hearts were "bent towards forgiveness and peace."

Adams was a cornerback who played in college at South Carolina State University and played for several teams in the NFL, including the San Francisco 49ers, New England Patriots and Oakland Raiders. 

He played high school football in York County. 


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