Fight led to fatal Johnston County shooting Sunday evening, police say

The scene of the shooting where Jason Audas Rivera was shot to death (CBS North Carolina)

BENSON, N.C. (WNCN) — One man was shot to death and another man has been charged with murder in the incident that occurred Sunday evening in Benson, police said.

The shooting was reported around 7:30 p.m. at 905 Barefoot St. According to Benson police, officers arrived on scene in response to a report of a shooting and found the victim, identified as 40-year-old Jason Audas Rivera, of Smithfield, lying on the sidewalk near apartment 905 with a gunshot wound to the chest. EMS and first responders tried to save Rivera, but he was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.


The investigation got underway and police were eventually able to identify and locate a suspect in the shooting. Michael Trism Fenix Willis, 22, of Lucama, was identified as the suspect.

Police said that after interviewing a number of witnesses, they were able to determine that Rivera and Willis were at the Barefoot Street apartment visiting the person who lived there when they got into an argument with each other. The argument became physical and Willis took out a “small caliber firearm” and shot Rivera in the chest, police said. Rivera was able to walk out of the apartment but then collapsed outside. Willis then fled from the scene on foot, police said.

Willis turned himself in at the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office after Benson Police Department investigators contacted him through family members and by phone, police said. He was transported back to Benson to meet with investigators. He was charged with first-degree murder shortly after.

Willis is being held under no bond at the Johnston County Jail.

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