911 call implicates ex-wife in attack

Dispatchers hear woman's admission. Man dies hours after Pullen Park incident

Staff WriterMarch 30, 2006 

The man fatally shot in a city park Friday night used a cell phone to tell emergency dispatchers that his ex-wife had attacked him before she took the phone and echoed his statement, according to a copy of the 911 call released Wednesday by police.

Earl Thierry Brown, 42, of Knightdale, died at WakeMed Raleigh Campus five hours after after being shot in the torso at 7 p.m. in Raleigh's Pullen Park. His ex-wife, Camellia Boyd Norton Brown, 47, of Fuquay-Varina, is charged with murder by the Raleigh Police Department and is being held without bail in the Wake County jail.

Camellia Brown had been told by a Wake County judge not to come near Earl Brown or the couple's two children after a five-year custody battle in which she stalked and falsely accused her ex-husband of sexually abusing the couple's 8-year-old daughter and physically abusing their 6-year-old son.

Both children were at the park at the time of the shooting.

"Just go away, please," Earl Brown said to his ex-wife before speaking to an emergency dispatcher. "I'm at Pullen Park, I've been shot."

A few moments later, as Earl Brown's condition worsened, a hysterical Camellia Brown is heard saying, "I killed you, I killed you."

She then spoke with the emergency dispatcher between screams and sobs. After the dispatcher asked whether she shot Earl Brown, Camellia Brown responded that she had.

The couple's two children can be heard in the background of the call. Camellia Brown tells them to pray.

The Browns married in 1996 and divorced five years later. Earl Brown, a state Department of Revenue employee who went by Thierry, was awarded sole custody of both children after a judge questioned Camellia Brown's mental stability and said her conduct traumatized the two children.

On several occasions, Camellia Brown donned a wig and tried to see the children in their school. She was arrested in June by Knightdale police for breaking into Earl Brown's home and demanding to see their children.

The couple once worked at a Jackson-Hewitt tax service office in Raleigh, according to Thomas Dimmock, a lawyer who represented Earl Brown in custody proceedings. Camellia Brown had an unsuccessful bid for mayor of Garner in 1993 when she ran as Camellia B. Norton.

At the end of the emergency call, a Raleigh police officer arrived and began consoling the distraught children.

"It's all right, it's all right," the officer is heard saying. "Things are OK."

A funeral service for Brown will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at Mid-Way Baptist Church, 6910 Fayetteville Road in Raleigh.

Staff writer Sarah Ovaska can be reached at 829-4622 or sovaska@newsobserver.com.

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