Dedrick Thomas was charged with especially aggravated kidnapping, aggravated robbery, evading arrest to wit vehicle pursuit and being a convicted felon in possession of a gun.
According to police, they received a call from an individual who claimed he was following two kidnapping suspects in the area of Court and Cleveland. With that man’s help, police were quickly able to locate the suspects’ 2001 Nissan Maxima and tried to initiate a traffic stop. The driver refused to comply and continued into Arkansas along Interstate 40.
The driver took the Mound City Road exit but then got back on the interstate heading back into Memphis.
Having been made aware of the situation, Arkansas State Police were able to perform a pit maneuver, causing the driver to crash into the concrete median.
The unidentified passenger jumped from the vehicle and ran towards a wooded area. Authorities said he was armed at the time.
It’s unclear what happened next, but the Memphis Police Department confirmed that two officers opened fire, striking the suspect. The individual was killed. The officers were not injured.
Authorities said Thomas – who investigators said was the driver – was quickly taken into custody without incident.
The victim in this case was rescued from the trunk of the car and treated for injuries. He told police during questioning that he had dropped off a friend at a nearby apartment when the two men approached him and demanded his belongings. He was held at gunpoint and then forced into the trunk of the car.
The two officers who fired the shots were routinely relieved of duty pending the outcome of the investigation, the Memphis Police Department said. A third was also relieved of duty, but it’s unclear why.
WEST MEMPHIS, Ark.–The I-40 bridge was shut down after a fatal officer-involved shooting in Arkansas.
Officers said the incident started on Avalon and Court in Memphis concerning a robbery and kidnapping around 12:00 Tuesday morning. Police were told two suspects were seen forcing a man into the trunk of the car.
The suspects then fled the scene in a white Nissan.
MPD located the suspects’ car in the area of Madison and Clevland and attempted to make a traffic stop. The driver did not stop the car and drove westbound on Madison Avenue.
Investigators said the suspects continued to drive towards I-40 into Arkansas. At this time, Arkansas State Police and West Memphis Police were notified about the incident.
The suspects eventually got off on the Mound City Road, turned around, and went eastbound on I-40 back towards Memphis.
An Arkansas State Police officer conducted a pit maneuver, forcing the suspect’s car to stop.
Two suspects tried to flee the scene, but officers quickly apprehended the driver without incident. The passenger jumped the concrete divider wall and was chased by officers on foot.
Authorities said shots were fired during the officer and suspect’s encounter.
The passenger was shot and pronounced dead on the scene. No officers were injured.
Originally, the Memphis Police Department told NBC affiliate Action News 5 the passenger was apprehended and the driver ran from the scene – but that has been corrected.
Investigators said the man kidnapped was a 61-year-old man, he was located in the trunk of the suspect’s car.
He had minor injuries and was treated on the scene.
Officials with the Memphis Police Department said the Arkansas State Police will be conducting this investigation since the fatal shooting happened in Arkansas.