Local/State

Warrants in Smithfield shooting reveal man killed another over crack addiction

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

New search warrants from the Johnston County Sheriff's Office reveal the alleged shooter in Friday's murder-suicide in Smithfield told authorities he shot a man because he got him addicted to crack.

According to the search warrants obtained by ABC11 Tuesday, a man who identified himself to detectives as "Craig Baker," told them he shot 32-year-old Lucas "Luke" Benton because he was a drug dealer and had got Baker addicted to crack.

Baker, who was later identified as William Craig Baker, reportedly called 911 just after 1:40 p.m. to report the murder/suicide.

When authorities arrived less than 10 minutes later to Baker's home on Hillcrest Road off Galilee Road, they found Benton lying next to a car parked in the yard and Baker lying near the back of the home with a weapon next to him.

Benton was declared dead at the scene. Baker was still alive and told authorities he did not owe Benton any money, according to the warrants.

Warrants showed that a "crack cocaine rock was found beside" Benton's body.

The warrants also stated that there was blood on the carpet inside the home and in a trash can.

Detectives said it appeared Benton had been dragged out of the home.

The warrants also stated that Baker said he had to leave, leading detectives to believe Baker meant he wanted to die.

"I shot him, then I shot myself, I need to leave," Baker said as EMS arrived.

Baker said his wife also lived at the house, but she was at work when the incident happened.

Baker died on the way to Johnston Medical Center in Smithfield.

Benton will be laid Saturday at 1 p.m. at Western Assembly Disciples of Christ Church in Newton Grove.

On Friday, a play Baker was supposed to perform in will open at the Neuse Little Theatre. Outside the main entrance, a wreath has been placed on a bridge engraved with Baker's name.

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johnston county, shooting, local/state
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