Parents of murdered Shelbyville man share ‘living nightmare’


SHELBYVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — ‘A monster’ is how the parents of a 22-year-old Shelbyville man described their son’s killer. 

Will Warner was found Friday murdered on 35th Avenue North in West Nashville. Investigators believe he was driven to that location and shot to death. 

The heartache is indescribable for his parents. 

“It’s like somebody actually taking the breath you take away from you,” mother Christy Warner told News 2.

The heartache is one a parent never wants to endure. The Warners called the situation a ‘nightmare.’ 

“He’s the kind you dream of having and we had him and we lost him,” the Warners said of their son. 

The family said Will was shot five times, once in the head and four times in the back. A couple of hours later, the Warners said Will’s girlfriend was also found shot at his Bedford County home.

“She told us this herself, he put the gun right to her face and pulled the trigger. She said I hit the floor and I laid on the floor playing dead and he kicked me four times to see if I was dead and when she heard the back door slam she went to the bathroom and called 911,” the Warner’s explained. 

Twenty-five-year-old Sam Rich is behind bars facing attempted murder charges out of Bedford County for the shooting. The TBI said he surrendered Sunday night to the sheriff’s office. Metro police said he is also being questioned in Warner’s murder.

The Warners said they know Rich well and that he has threatened the family before. 

Records show Rich has been arrested numerous times over the years on charges ranging from aggravated burglary to drug charges. 

“You know he should still be behind bars somewhere for all the crimes he’s committed in the past and I would still have my child,” stated the heartbroken mom. 

Rich is the son of Bedford County Judge Charles Rich. News 2 reached out to him for comment but did not hear back.

The TBI hasn’t released the name of the female shooting victim, but the Warners said she is still recovering at the hospital.

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