Slain man had broken in home before

Staff WriterJune 29, 2010 

— Wake County sheriff's deputies had not made an arrest late Monday in the slaying of a 29-year-old man shot to death at his parents' home southeast of Apex on Sunday morning.

Benjamin Lloyd Hamilton, who was dead when deputies arrived at the scene, was charged in May with two counts of breaking and entering in connection with break-ins at his parents' home at 5625 Windlake Court and his father's business, Hamilton Machine Work, at 908 Withers Road near Apex, according to sheriff's spokeswoman Phyllis Stephens.

Stephens declined Monday to comment further on the break-ins.

Hamilton was also charged last month with first-degree trespassing. The case was dismissed in Wake County District Court last week, state records show.

Family members confirmed that Benjamin Hamilton is a cousin of baseball star and Raleigh native Josh Hamilton.

The 911 tapes released Monday afternoon by the sheriff's office reveal little about the circumstances surrounding the shooting but recorded the voice of sheriff's department Capt. R. Martin, who was off-duty.

Martin tells a 911 dispatcher that he had recently investigated a break-in at the Hamiltons' home, which led to charges against the couple's son. He told her that Linwood Louis Hamilton Sr. called him and was extremely upset about something.

"He just called me screaming and crying," Martin told the dispatcher.

He asked the dispatcher to send two deputy units to meet him at nearby Penny Road to accompany him to the Hamiltons' home.

Deputies arrived at the residence about 9 a.m. Sunday and found the body of Benjamin Hamilton, Stephens said.

Benjamin Hamilton sometimes lived with his parents, Stephens said. Both parents were present during the shooting and when the deputies arrived, she said. Both are cooperating in the investigation, Stephens said.

The Wake County Sheriff's Office is investigating the death as a homicide.

"This was not a random act," Stephens reported on Sunday.

Neighbor John Richard Griggs, of 5620 Windlake Court, described the couple and "kind and sweet."

"They are wonderful neighbors and sweet people," he said.

Jason Hamilton, brother to Texas Rangers slugger and former Athens Drive High School star Josh Hamilton, said: "We played ball and all. They're distant cousins. I don't know exactly how close we are."

Benjamin Hamilton would have celebrated his 30th birthday July 13, court records show.

thomasi.mcdonald@newsobserver.com or (919) 829-4533

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