New details of a rare Korean beach murder reveal that alcohol may have inflamed the shooter’s anger

A man who confessed to shooting and killing his neighbor before shooting himself at Cory Beach in May was legally drunk according to a recent state poison report.

  • Police responded to Ocean View Avenue in Kure Beach just before 3 p.m. on Tuesday, May 17, following reports of the shooting. Officers found 55-year-old John Allen Garistow dead with multiple gunshot wounds.

William Bennett was later found dead inside his home.

A rare murder and suicide shocked the small port city of just under 3,000 residents.

The house, located at 121 Ocean View Avenue in Kure Beach, was built on Thursday, May 26, 2022 — more than a week after a neighbor dispute that left two men dead.

According to his toxicology report from the Raleigh Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, 61-year-old Bennett had a blood alcohol content of 0.20 — well above the state’s legal driving limit of 0.08.

At this level of intoxication, Bennett may have experienced disorientation, disorientation, nausea, and blackouts, according to the American Addiction Centers.

Information about Bennett’s activities that day comes from a call he made that afternoon to 911.

During the call, he identified himself as the shooter and told the dispatcher about the alleged events that took place that afternoon.

“Yes, I just killed my neighbor,” Bennett said.

Previous news: ‘I just killed my neighbor’: 911 calls reveal more details of the Korean beach shooting

dispute: Two dead at a Korean beach after a dispute between neighbors

Bennett called 911 at 2:48 p.m. He told the emergency dispatcher that he and his neighbor had argued earlier that day when Bennett saw him feeding “wild animals” near his property. Bennett said he called animal control.

According to the medical examiner’s investigation report, this call occurred at noon on May 17. The report says law enforcement found Bennett drunk and agitated during that interaction.

On his 911 call after the shooting, Bennett said he left to go to the store for a beer and when he returned, he claimed that his neighbor had started using swear words and gestures.

According to the coroner’s investigation report, investigators identified a case of beer in Bennett’s refrigerator.

“I’m sorry, I’ve had enough,” Bennett told 911.

Bennett then told the dispatcher that he shot his neighbor five times with an assault rifle.

Related: 7 things to know about buying a handgun in Wilmington

When Bennett hears the sirens approaching his house, he tells the dispatcher that “I’m not sure if I’ll be transferred alive or not, I don’t know yet,” and says, “I’m not going to jail.”

About seven and a half minutes into the call, Bennett stopped answering the sender. According to a press release from the Currie Beach Police Department, officers heard a gunshot from inside the suspect’s home.

According to the coroner’s investigation report, Bennett’s death was considered a suicide.

Jimmy Cross is the StarNews public safety reporter. You can reach her at or message her on Twitter @jameybcross.

This article originally appeared on Wilmington StarNews: Alcohol may have fueled shooter anger in rare Korean beach murder

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