At the request of 1st District Attorney General Tony Clark, TBI Special Agents are investigating the circumstances surrounding an officer-involved shooting that occurred Monday evening just inside the Johnson City limits.
Preliminary information indicates that just before 7:30 EST, deputies with the Carter County Sheriff’s Office spotted an individual traveling along Highway 67 in Elizabethton that was known to have outstanding warrants. A traffic stop was initiated and the driver, identified as Buford S. Whitson (DOB 11/18/69), refused to stop. Deputies pursued the vehicle as it continued to travel west on Highway 67. Shortly after entering the city limits of Johnson City, Whitson drove through the median and into the eastbound lanes of Highway 67 before stopping the vehicle. As deputies attempted to take Whitson into custody, he pointed a gun at them. Deputies fired shots at Whitson, striking him. He was transported to the Johnson City Medical Center where he was pronounced dead.
The TBI currently has a team of Agents and Forensic Scientists working to gather any and all relevant details. As in any case, our investigative findings will be shared with the District Attorney General throughout the process for his consideration and review.
As is our policy, the TBI does not identify the officers involved in these types of incidents and instead refers questions of that nature to their respective department.