Skip to content

Woman wakes up 'counting gunshots' as fatal Pine Street shooting unfolds (8 photos)

Sault Ste. Marie resident recalls sights and sounds of gunfire that left 19-year-old dead, officer with serious injuries

Nancie Featherston says she “literally woke up counting gunshots” when she was jolted awake in her Pine Street apartment early Sunday morning. 

That was the reality of a police-involved shooting that left a 19-year-old dead and an officer taken to hospital with serious injuries. 

Featherston says she heard six or seven gunshots in rapid succession, a pause, and then one more gunshot. 

“We saw the dead kid, you know? The first thing I hear waking up is the shots, then when I got to my window I heard the officer say ‘officer down.’ But before that, I heard him say, ‘I was shot in the ass’, and then later I heard him say, ‘I can’t feel my legs.’ That’s all I’m worried about, this officer,” said Featherston, speaking with SooToday Sunday. “I mean, the scene was completely under control, and then there’s no response from the guy laying on the ground and they’re telling him to ‘put your weapon down.’ They called him Michael.”

“When they finally disarmed him, they had to make sure he wasn’t going to be a threat. He was already gone.”

She says there are a number of bullet holes in the building next to her. 

“It just felt really big city, and I’m a country girl. It was a bit of a shock, that’s all,” she said. 

Featherston shared her account of the incident on a social media group shortly after it happened. She regrets her actions and is apologizing publicly.  

“I really wasn’t thinking clearly,” she said. 

Featherston tells SooToday that she moved from her previous home on Tancred Street in hopes of ending up in a better neighbourhood. 

“I had this illusion that this was a safer neighbourhood, but that’s kind of shot to hell now,” she said.

The investigation is now in the hands of Ontario's Special Investigations Unit. Four investigators and two forensic investigators have been assigned to the case.

James Hopkin

About the Author: James Hopkin

James Hopkin is a reporter for SooToday based in Sault Ste. Marie
Read more