YouTuber Timothy Wilks, 20, was filming a series of “pranks” for his online channel. The intent was for Wilks, and another YouTuber, to lunge at passers-by with a fake butcher knife. Witnesses claim they intended to film and subsequently post the reaction videos. However, things turned deadly when Wilks approached David Starnes Jr, 23, and his group of friends.
Starnes told the Nashville Police Departmentt he feared for his life when he drew a weapon and fired. Wilks was fatally struck and died shortly after. Starnes says he was unaware of the YouTube page and the alleged pranks. Furthermore, he stated the YouTubers appeared to be initiating an attack or a robbery. Thus, causing him to fear for the safety of his group.
The incident occurred in parking lot of Urban Air trampoline park around 9:30pm on Friday night.
Police have not detained Starnes, however their investigation is still ongoing. Furthermore, reports have implied Starnes was legally able to carry the weapon he used. As of now, Wilks’ YouTube channel appears to have been taken down.
Tennessee’s self defense code states, “There is no duty to retreat before using deadly force, as long as you are acting lawfully and are in a place you have a right to be in.”
Please be careful with your online activities. No amount of internet clout is worth being shot. Also if you carry a weapon for self defense, make sure you know the laws in your area. Stay tuned to American Grit for more news and breaking stories.
There has been disputes to pictures thought to have been Timothy Wilks. Though they are still posted on other sources, we removed the image in question until the matter is resolved.