A Nashville bar owner claimed self defense over the weekend after fatally shooting country music singer Jerald Wayne Mills, 44, in connection with an argument over smoking.
Witnesses told WSMV that 44-year-old Chris Michael Ferrell shot Mills at the Pit & Barrel bar at around 5 a.m. Saturday morning following an argument that started when the singer began smoking in a non-smoking area. The suspect and the victim were reportedly friends.
Mills was later pronounced dead after being taken to Vanderbilt University Medical Center.
“We’re investigating Chris Ferrell’s claims of self-defense,” Nashville police spokesperson Kris Mumford told the Tennessean.
Ferrell had a valid permit to carry a handgun, according to WSMV.
In 2010, both the Tennessee state House and Senate overrode Democratic Gov. Phil Bredesen’s veto on a bill to allow handguns in bars.
Watch this video from WAFF, broadcast Nov. 24, 2013.