CATAWBA COUNTY, N.C. -- A Catawba County woman is dead, her boyfriend suffered a gunshot wound to the face and investigators have conflicting reports about what happened.
The Catawba County Sheriff's Department responded to a mobile home on Topaz Drive in Maiden on Tuesday evening with the SWAT Team, under the impression they were dealing with a standoff situation with the occupants.
Sheriff Coy Reid says his office received three 911 calls about an incident, one indicating a man had been shot in the face the other two calls prompted the heavy response.
"Subject said he had killed his girlfriend and was going to kill himself; we received a third report that he was held up and his girlfriend a hostage in a mobile home," said Sheriff Reid. "We thought we had an armed suspect in a home with a hostage inside, so Star team along with negotiators were called out."
Deputies evacuated the area as they prepared for what they thought was a hostage situation.
"I just heard we had to get out and I just walked out and seen the cops and all these guns and stuff I was like, 'oh my God,' it was scary. We didn't know what was going in," said Cassandra McCloud, who was visiting her sister nearby. "I had to leave my car, keys, pocketbook everything."
Eventually, officers forced their way inside the home and found a woman, Angela Smith Tramble, dead inside. There was no one else there. They did confirm that Tramble's boyfriend, Jeffrey Dwayne Hoppes, was injured, suffering a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his face.
Hoppes, who remains in critical condition at CMC-Main, is a suspect in Tremble's murder.
McCloud says she saw him before deputies arrived.
"I saw blood on his knee his whole pants leg was covered in blood, I didn't actually see where the blood was coming from he was just holding something over his mouth," she said.
Sheriff Reid says the man went a neighbor for help and was transported to the hospital before the SWAT team arrived. They have not released the names of the man or his girlfriend.
The matter is still under investigation.
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