Crime & Courts

‘Squirrels did me in,’ NC man tells 911 after being shot by his own booby trap

Edwin Smith set up the booby trap at his North Carolina home, law enforcement said in a Gaston Gazette report.

The 69-year-old was the one who ran a trip wire from his back door to a shotgun, according to what he said in a 911 call, shared by WBTV.

Smith was the one who opened the door of his Cleveland County home and triggered the booby trap, with gunfire hitting him in the arm, The State previously reported.

But when it came to assessing blame, Smith singled out another culprit.

“This just sucks, (freaking) squirrels did me in,” Smith could be heard saying on Monday’s 911 call.

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According to the Cleveland County Sheriff’s Office, Smith “opened his back door to feed the squirrels outside, and that’s when the booby trap went off,” WBTV reported.

The shotgun blast hit Smith in his arm, something he told to the 911 operator.

“I blew my arm off. Please hurry, I’m gonna die,” Smith said in the 911 call. “Just tell everybody I love them OK?

“I’m out here in the driveway, my arm’s blowed off. I’m shot anyway, I’m done in my life anyway.”

Smith did not die.

His arm was saved by a deputy who applied a tourniquet to stop the bleeding, according to WCNC. After being taken to an area hospital in Shelby, deputies said, it was likely the 68-year-old would “be flown (to) Charlotte,” for treatment.

There have been no updates on his condition.

While waiting for an ambulance to arrive, Smith can be heard in the 911 call worrying about what responding officers would want to see, including his guns.

Responding deputies used caution as they went through Smith’s house, making sure not to set off any other potential booby traps, the Gaston Gazette reported.

Smith had several no trespassing signs on his property, The State reported.

One of them, shared on Twitter by a WSOC reporter, read “All vehicles that drive up this private road, will have there tag#s sent to the sheriffs office for positive I.D. So, all you crack heads, meth heads, heroin users, drug dealers or anyone doing criminal activity! Oh! And no illegal aliens too! Stay the Hell out and off this private road!

“Thank you and have a nice day.”

One neighbor said Smith was a kind man, who stood up for our neighborhood when drugs and bad people started moving in,” Crystal Blevins said according to the Gaston Gazette.

“I’ve never seen anything quite like this,” said Capt. Jon Wright, per

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