NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — The grandmother of a 20-year-old man killed outside of an Old Hickory business during a “prank robbery” last week is urging parents and guardians to pay attention to what their children are doing on social media platforms.
Metro police said Timothy Wilks was shot to death the night of Feb. 5 in the parking lot of Urban Air Adventure Park on Old Hickory Boulevard in Old Hickory.
Detectives determined Wilks and a friend were taking part in a “prank robbery,” as part of a YouTube video. When the two friends, armed with butcher knives, approached a group of people in the parking lot, police said a 23-year-old man in the group was unaware of the “prank” and shot Wilks, killing him.
“As far as this YouTube stuff, this is something new to me that he was actually into it. It’s still pretty much a mystery to me,” Shirley Berry, the grandmother of Timothy Wilks told News 2.
Berry described her grandson as “soft-spoken” and said he worked at the Hermitage Walmart for several years, before going to school to pursue a career in HVAC. He also served as a role model for his two younger siblings and his cousins, she said.
“I don’t even see him as a man. I always see him as my baby,” Berry explained. “You’ve never really seen him smile too much. He was always serious.”
She added, “I don’t want [people] to see him as a thug. I don’t want them to have any misconception about my grandson.”
While Berry grieves the loss of her grandson, she said she hopes others can learn from what has happened to her family.
“If your children are doing anything like his, please let this be a note to really check on what your children are doing,” she said. “[There] needs to be awareness now that this is very dangerous.”
The investigation into the fatal shooting is being conducted by the Metro Nashville Police Department.
The 23-year-old who shot Wilks has not been charged, claiming self-defense, police said.