Wayne Mills: Country Singer Shot Dead
Police are investigating the fatal shooting of a country music singer in a Nashville bar – reportedly after an argument over the musician lighting up in a no-smoking area.
The bar owner, Chris Ferrell, shot Wayne Mills, 44, in the early hours of Saturday, Tennessee officers said. The Pit And Barrel bar had been closed at that point.
Mills was taken to hospital, but he died there, police said.
Investigators are looking into Ferrell’s claim that he opened fire in self-defence.
Ferrell, who has a valid handgun permit, said the two got into an argument because Mills was smoking a cigarette in an area designated as non-smoking.
No arrests have been made.
Mills toured with the Wayne Mills Band, which has played college towns for more than 15 years.
Country music stars Jamey Johnson and Blake Shelton, as well as American Idol winner Taylor Hicks, all opened for the band in their early careers, according to the group’s website.
Shelton tweeted: “Extremely sad to hear about the death of my old friend Wayne Mills.”
The Pit And Barrel was to have been featured on Sunday on a programme called Bar Rescue on the channel Spike TV, but the cable network decided to pull the episode, running a rerun instead, according to spokeswoman Shana Tepper.
The series features struggling bars and clubs that are given makeovers by a nightclub expert.