Wade Williamson

Wade Williamson. Berkeley County Sheriff's Office/Provided

A Berkeley County man who told a 911 dispatcher he shot his friend while defending himself is now charged in the man's death. 

Berkeley County sheriff's authorities announced the murder charge against Wade David Williamson III on Sunday, one week after the April 8 shooting at his home in the Cane Bay neighborhood. Williamson, 34, also faces a count of possession of a weapon during a violent crime. He surrendered to deputies. 

Liam Owen Vernon, 35, of Summerville died at an area hospital after being shot three times, according to the Sheriff's Office. 

After the shooting, Williamson called 911 around 7:20 a.m. from his home at 137 Decatur Drive. He said he and Vernon had been getting along all night until Vernon hit him in the jaw. 

"He tried to keep hitting me. I grabbed the gun, and I shot him twice in the chest (to) get him away from me," Williamson said, according to audio of the 911 call released last week. 

At one point, Williamson said he "didn't have any choice" but to shoot Vernon. 

He repeated the story several times and asked if Vernon could hear him, telling the dispatcher at one point that his friend wasn't breathing. 

Deputies found Vernon lying on his back on the kitchen floor with a bloody towel covering his chest. He was unresponsive, according to an incident report. 

Authorities last week said Williamson was cooperating through his attorney as detectives investigated whether the shooting was in self-defense.

A bond hearing is scheduled for Monday. 

Reach Angie Jackson at 843-937-5705. Follow her on Twitter at @angiejackson23

Angie Jackson covers crime and breaking news for the Post and Courier. She previously covered the same beat for the Grand Rapids Press and MLive.com in Michigan. When she’s not reporting, Angie enjoys teaching yoga and exploring the outdoors.