1 charged in January shootout with Hickory PD

1 charged in January shootout with Hickory PD

Credit: Catawba County Sheriff's Office

Michael Lee Watson.

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by WCNC.com Staff

WCNC.com

Posted on March 22, 2013 at 10:49 AM

Updated Saturday, Nov 2 at 6:21 AM

HICKORY, N.C. -- Hickory Police have charged a man in connection with a January shooting in which an officer was struck, but saved by his bulletproof vest.

Michael Lee Watson is facing four counts of assault with a deadly weapon on a government official and one count of obstruction of justice.

The charges stem from January 21, when a drug warrant was executed at Watson's residence. The situation quickly turned into a shootout.

Watson suffered a gunshot wound from return fire, and a police officer was shot in his vest, authorities say. Hickory Police say the bulletproof vest saved the officer.

Police initially charged Watson's son, Kenneth Alexander Hewitt, as he confessed to the shootings, but further investigation indicated Watson was responsible, officials say.

Hewitt is facing an obstruction of justice charge for the false statements given about the incident. All other charges related to the incident will be dismissed, according to the Hickory Police Department.

Two young children were in the home at the time of the shooting, which took place late in the night in the 1500 block of 31st Street SE, a quiet neighborhood on the east side of Hickory, south of Interstate 40.

Watson was booked into the Catawba County Detention Center Thursday under a $500,000 bond.

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