GASTONIA, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — A bouncing basketball at the intersection of April Drive and Grier Street is a welcome sound on Friday. Things have been quiet for the last two days after a gunman opened fire on his neighbors.
“The girlfriend was talking about, ‘No stop!” said William White, from his hospital bed. “And he just started shooting.”
That was Tuesday night just after 7:30. Police say 24-year-old Robert Singletary opened fire after a basketball rolled into the yard of the home he was living in. White spoke exclusively to Queen City News while in stable condition recovering from his wounds and says he ran to get his 6-year-old daughter Kinsley who was on the swing set.
“I said, ‘Kinsley come on, Kinsley come on,’” described White. “Get up her baby, come on, get in the house.”
Singletary kept firing according to witnesses, and White’s family.
“He would have killed us all that day if he had enough bullets,” said Ashley Hilderbrand, White’s wife.
Hilderbrand was grazed by gunfire, and right beside her, William White and their 6-year-old daughter were shot as well.
“I got halfway up the dodge truck and that’s when he shot, BOOM,” exclaimed White. “Luckily, I got in front of my daughter, because to me, that’s what he was aiming at. I got in front of her, the bullet hit me, went through me, and the bullet fragment came out and hit my daughter in the cheek.”
Kinsley White was treated and released; for two days local and national law enforcement searched for Singletary, and then he turned himself in to authorities Thursday afternoon in Tampa, Florida.
“I come running out the door jumping for joy hollering and screaming,” said Kinsley’s grandmother, Carolyn Hilderbrand. “He turned himself in.”
“I texted him and showed him he was happy,” added White’s other daughter Chloe.
That text read, “They got him daddy.”
White’s response: “Hell yeah, I’m happy they got him. Thank God, my kids can rest, my family can sleep in peace.”
It means Kinsley can come home from staying with other family members. Her mom was trying to protect her by staying with a cousin.
“To me, he would have come back and killed us all,” said Ashley Hilderbrand.
“I get to be home and play with all my friends,” said Kinsley as she came home.
Kinsley went right back to the swings where she was on Tuesday. She could go back to laughing too. When she learned the news the man who shot at them has been arrested?
“I was just happy,” said Kinsley.
“Since he’s been caught, it’s like a big elephant lifted off my chest,” added Ashley Hilderbrand.
Now they just need one more family member to come home.
“That’s my life,” said White. “I got four babies dude, and that’s my life.”