Search Warrant Reveals New Details In Murder Investigation

A newly released search warrant has revealed new details about the murder of a Johnston County woman who was allegedly shot and killed by her stepfather.  On August 21st at 12:29am, the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office responded to a shooting at 120 Julio Lane, Garner, off New Bethel Road near the Wake County line.  Deputies said 42 year-old Cheryl Lynn Guinn-Hirst had been shot and killed by her step-father, Ronald James Gasper, 65, of the same address. Gasper was charged with murder.

According to a copy of the search warrant obtained by Johnston County Report, when deputies arrived at the family home that morning, the victim was found lying on her back in a bedroom. EMS began treating her but Guinn-Hirst died at the scene at 12:57am.  She had a gunshot wound to her chest-abdominal area.

A detective stated in the search warrant the victim’s mother, Julie Olson Gasper, told deputies “she was asleep in the residence and was awoken by gunfire in the residence.”  She ran out of her bedroom and found her daughter suffering from gunshot wounds in her bedroom.

According to the search warrant, Julie Gasper made statement implying her husband may have shot the victim.  Deputies also noted there were no signs of forced entry into the home.

Deputies observed Ronald Gasper at the residence and stated he appeared intoxicated.  Deputies observed a handgun lying on a blanket next to a chair in the living room where the suspect slept at night.  He was treated by EMS at the scene and was eventually transported to Johnston Medical Center in Clayton “due to his intoxication level” according to the warrant.

The search warrant was issued on August 21st and signed by Chief Resident Superior Court Judge Thomas Lock.  The warrant was issued for all of Ronald Gasper’s medical records including details of his medical treatment, interviews with medical personnel, diagnosis and discharge information and other documentation about his treatment and medical condition on the day of the fatal shooting.

Ronald Gasper was discharged from Johnston Medical Center that same day and transported to the Johnston County Jail where he was charged with his step-daughter’s murder. He is currently being held without bond.

Authorities have not disclosed a motive.

Cheryl Guinn-Hirst was a former paramedic.