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Suspect Fatally Shot By Watauga County Sheriff's Deputy


A Watauga County Sheriff’s Deputy fatally shot a man Saturday night during what the sheriff’s department described as a “violent struggle” with a suspect.

According to the sheriff’s office, the shooting occurred after deputies answered a call about a man trying to break into homes near Hardin Road, which is east of Boone.

In a press release, Sheriff Len Hagaman said Deputy Adam Gragg got out of his vehicle to approach a man who was walking in the road. The release said man attacked the deputy and a "violent struggle" followed.

The sheriff said Gragg fired his weapon, striking Andrew John Mason, 22.  Mason died at a hospital. 

Deputy Gragg  been placed on administrative leave, per Watauga County Sheriff’s Office protocol. The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation is handling the case.