Hear 911 call made after shooting of SC college student who tried to enter wrong house
A woman called 911 after her boyfriend allegedly shot at a South Carolina college student who tried to enter the wrong house in August 2023.
Two 911 calls reveal what happened in the moments before and directly after a South Carolina college student was fatally shot last August after trying to enter the wrong house.
Nicholas Donofrio, a 20-year-old University of South Carolina student originally from Madison, Connecticut, died after being shot in the early morning hours of Aug. 26, 2023, when he “mistakenly went to the wrong home” on South Holly Street in Columbia “and attempted to enter by repeatedly knocking, banging, and kicking at the front door while manipulating the door handle,” police said in a press release last year.
Donofrio also lived on South Holly Street at the time.
“Hi, somebody’s trying to break into our house. They’re trying to break in the front door. They’re banging on it,” a woman can be heard telling dispatchers in a 911 call made around 2 a.m. on Aug. 26.
“They just broke the window. My boyfriend just shot through the door,” the woman says in a recording of the call obtained by Fox News Digital. “… Please get here fast.”
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Nick’s mother, Dina Barra Donofrio, told FOX61 in a statement that her family is “very proud of Nick.” (Facebook)
The woman adds that she thinks her boyfriend “hit” the person, later identified as Donofrio. She can be heard crying during the call and telling police that the person broke through a “frosted” glass panel on their front door.
The dispatcher tells the woman that police will be arriving at her home shortly, and she thanks him.
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Days after the fatal shooting, the Columbia Police Department (CPD) determined that the shooting was justified under the state’s stand your ground law, which allows residents to defend themselves and their property with firearms, after consulting with the Fifth Circuit Solicitor’s Office. CPD ultimately decided not to file charges against the unnamed resident who shot Donofrio.
Nicholas Donofrio, a University of South Carolina student from Connecticut, was fatally shot on Aug. 26, 2023, after he apparently tried to enter the wrong house. (Facebook)
Surveillance video footage taken outside the home on South Holly Street where the shooting took place shows Donofrio initially walking past the residence. More footage shows Donofrio banging on the front door later on.
Donofrio allegedly broke through a glass window on the front door and attempted to unlock the doorknob through the broken window, at which point the male resident fired a single shot, fatally hitting the 20-year-old man in the chest.
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Police found Donofrio dead on the front porch.
In another 911 call made around 3 a.m. on Aug. 26 obtained by Fox News Digital, Donofrio’s friends tell dispatchers that they put him in an Uber after a night out, but he never arrived at home.
“We haven’t heard from him in hours. [The Uber driver] was supposed to drop him off at home, and he never made it, and I have no idea where he is, and we are all incredibly worried,” the friend says, adding that the Uber driver saw him “passed out on the front porch,” but his roommates did not see him at home.
The caller told police not to do a welfare check at Donofrio’s home because the 20-year-old was not there and filed a missing person report instead. The caller gave the dispatcher Donofrio’s information and said the 20-year-old was drunk when the group of friends sent him home in an Uber.
Police said they determined that Donofrio’s death was a justifiable homicide under the Protection of Persons and Property Act, based on evidence recovered from the scene, including surveillance video, audio evidence and witness statements.
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“This is a heartbreaking case for all involved,” Columbia Police Department Chief W.H. “Skip” Holbrook said in an August statement. “Our lead investigator has diligently worked to gather all the facts surrounding this incident. He has also maintained contact with the Donofrio family throughout the investigation. We at the Columbia Police Department extend our deepest condolences for their immeasurable loss.”
Nick’s mother, Dina Barra Donofrio, told FOX61 in a statement that her family is “very proud of Nick.”
Nicholas Donofrio loved sports, and his family described him as “an intelligent, funny, sincere and compassionate person who worried about others” and “a deep thinker” with insights “often beyond his years.” (Facebook)
“We were very lucky to be his parents and love him very much. He was the son that every parent would wish for,” she wrote. “Nick was also loved by his brother, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and extended family. He had many, many friends, some of whom were like brothers to him. Nick was funny, smart, compassionate, and loved life. We will miss him immeasurably. We are extremely grateful for all the support we have received from family, friends, and the community during this tragic time.”
The college student was studying exercise science, according to his obituary.
He loved sports, and his family described him as “an intelligent, funny, sincere and compassionate person who worried about others,” and “a deep thinker” with insights “often beyond his years.”
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Donofio was a member of the Kappa Phi Sigma fraternity at South Carolina. Members of the fraternity created a GoFundMe for Donofrio’s funeral services in his name.
“Nick followed in his big brother Louie’s footsteps and joined our fraternity in the Fall of 2022,” the GoFundMe description states. “Nick was fun, charismatic, energetic, and a true man of honor. While his time with us was short, he made a significant difference in the lives of all of us and everyone he knew.”
Audrey Conklin is a digital reporter for Fox News Digital and FOX Business. Email tips to [email protected] or on Twitter at @audpants.