Updated 4/12/21 at 2:15 p.m. – The driver of the vehicle has been identified as a 17-year-old male. Due to the fact that the individual is a juvenile, his name is not being released at this time. He remains hospitalized.
At the request of 2nd District Attorney General Barry Staubus, TBI special agents are investigating the circumstances leading to an officer-involved shooting that happened late Sunday night in Kingsport.
Preliminary information indicates that just after 9:30 p.m., a deputy with the Hawkins County Sheriff’s Office and an officer with the Mount Carmel Police Department spotted a stolen SUV that was the subject of a BOLO (Be On the Lookout) traveling along Highway 11W. The vehicle was occupied by five people. A traffic stop was initiated, but the driver refused to stop, and a pursuit ensued. The officers continued to pursue the vehicle into the Kingsport City limits, where the driver eventually turned onto Virgil Avenue. As the vehicle came to the intersection of Virgil Avenue and Tip Top Avenue, the driver encountered officers with the Kingsport Police Department and a deputy with the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office blocking the roadway as part of an investigation involving an unrelated incident. As the vehicle approached the area, the driver did not stop and drove toward the officers, resulting in the Sullivan County deputy firing shots, striking the driver. The vehicle continued to travel a short distance before crashing in the 200 block of Virgil Avenue. The driver was transported to a local hospital for treatment. One of the passengers sustained minor injuries and was treated at the scene. No officers were injured during the incident.
At this time, the investigation remains active and ongoing, as TBI agents continue to gather any and all relevant evidence, interviews, and information. Throughout the process, investigative findings will be shared with the District Attorney General for his further review and consideration.
The TBI does not identify the officers involved in these types of incidents and, instead, refer questions of that nature to their respective departments to answer as they see fit.
As a reminder, the TBI acts solely as fact-finders in its cases and does not determine whether the actions of an officer were justified in these types of matters. That decision rests solely with the District Attorney General requesting TBI’s involvement.
Any updates on this investigation will be posted online at TBINewsroom.com.