Multi-state vehicle pursuit ends with 2 suspects dead, state trooper shot

Published: Dec. 16, 2021 at 9:52 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 17, 2021 at 4:37 AM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Shots were fired at I-55 and McLemore Thursday after officers tried to pull over a man wanted on felony warrants out of South Carolina.

“We heard a lot of gunshots and saw the cop cars, and we were like, oh something is going on,” said Michael Square who works on McClemore near where the shooting happened.

At around 2:30 p.m., Square and his co-workers were working at a classic car garage on McLemore when they heard the shots.

“We just made sure no one was shooting up in our business you know, so we took a little cover, and then we peeped out and seen the police officers,” said James Davis who works at the garage as well.

What they heard was the end of a police pursuit out of West Memphis, Arkansas.

Arkansas State Police and U.S. Marshal Task Force officers from eastern Arkansas were attempting to pull over a suspect at the on-ramp to I-55.

Two people were inside the car at the time. It’s unclear if the second person was wanted for warrants as well.

“At some point during the pursuit, at least one individual in the vehicle began firing at officers. When the Arkansas state trooper was struck by a bullet, he returned fire, hitting both individuals in the vehicle,” said Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) spokesperson, Keli Mcalister.

Both men were pronounced dead at the scene.

Arkansas State Police say 33-year-old Trooper Spencer Morris was shot on the scene. The three-year veteran based out of Forrest City, Arkansas was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

This is the second day in a row that TBI has been called in by the district attorney to investigate an incident where an officer fired his weapon in Memphis.

“It’s just getting outrageous here in Memphis. You wake up in the morning, somebody got robbed, killed, or something,” said Davis.

Morris was examined and released from the hospital.

As required under Arkansas State Police policy, he is currently on paid administrative leave.

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