A prank gone tragically wrong resulted in the death of a teenager by her partner and his friend.
Rachel Buchanan, 19, was socialising with her boyfriend and another couple outside of Hendersonville, around 105 miles west of Charlotte, on the 20th of October.
However, the 19-year-old was killed as a result of a ‘ill-fated’ prank Buchanan and the other female attempted on their boyfriends.
Andrew Murray, the District Attorney for Henderson, Transylvania, and Polk counties, has described the occurrence as “tragic and heartbreaking.”
According to Murray, the two males abandoned their partners in search of a phone charger. However, because of reports of a black panther lurking in the neighbouring woods, the men opted to walk with their legally held guns.
Murray’s email to the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation (NCSBI) described how one of the males and his father had previously seen a panther.
According to Murray, “Every interview conducted with persons familiar with the Conservative Lane region included this panther mythology as a key topic. There’s no doubt that multiple reported sightings of a black panther put Conservative Lane neighbours on edge about their safety and well-being.”
Buchanan and her buddy devised a joke when their boyfriends went off to find a charger.
They concealed in the bushes with rotten eggs, ready to throw them at the men.
According to the release, when Buchanan’s friend returned, he let out a fart, which made the two laugh.
The two men, though, heard sticks snapping and what they thought was growling. The email claimed, “Both also observed a black figure and felt the figure to be a threat.” The two started shooting.
One of the males was equipped with a 9mm handgun, while the other was armed with a 12-gauge shotgun.
Buchanan was shot three times in the chest and head.
Her friend yelled for the men to cease shooting and for assistance.
Paramedics took over from the two men who attempted first assistance.
According to the NCSBI, the 19-year-old died on her way to the hospital.
The men’s blood tests revealed no evidence of drugs or alcohol.
Murray later declared that no laws had been broken and that he was “convinced” that Rachel Olivia Buchanan’s gunshot and death was “a tragic and heart breaking accident.”
No charges have been filed in the case since it was closed.
“Unfortunately, everyone involved in Ms. Buchanan’s death must eternally live with their personal decision-making and actions on that fateful night,” Murray said.
“A lively life was senselessly cut far too short of a loved one and friend.”