Gladewater Officer Shoots Fleeing Supect - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

6/24/05-Longview

Gladewater Officer Shoots Fleeing Supect

A split second decision, a Gladewater officer has "no choice" but to shoot, as a suspect drives a car straight at him. The whole thing began after a hit-and-run accident turned into a manhunt. The minor accident happened in Gladewater last night. Three suspects then took off in a car, headed west on Highway 80.

Deputies caught up with them at Carrington lane, halfway between Big Sandy and Gladewater. Upshur County law officers say an unidentified Gladewater patrolman was caught in a frightening dilemma.

"An extremely dangerous situation when you're out there by yourself with three individuals and you don't know why they're running other than a hit-and-run and they go to a dead-end and you're the only officer out there," said Upshur County sheriff Anthony Betterton.

25-year-old Jonathan Jamile King was driving the car with 26-year-old Kaylon Crain and 18-year-old Brandy Bell as passengers. They had fled west on Highway 80 from a minor accident scene at the Gladewater Family Dollar. When a Gladewater patrolman caught up with them, Crain and Bell surrendered. Then Crain, already handcuffed ran into a wooded area. He was captured a short time later.

At the end of Sugarberry drive, King wheeled the car and tried to run over the Gladewater officer. The officer fired shots at him and King wheeled around in the pasture and came back at him again. That's when the police department says the fatal shots were fired.

"My officer did feel like his life was in danger when he fired the shots, yes sir he did," says Gladewater police chief Jimmy Davis.

King was pronounced dead at the scene, leaving investigators to try to find out why he did it.

"I have no idea at this time what their reasoning was, or what they were thinking," says Betterton.

In standard procedure, the Gladewater officer is on administrative leave while Texas Rangers investigate the shooting. Crain and Bell have both been charged with evading detention, and are still being held in Upshur County jail.

The body of the man shot and killed, Jonathan Jamile King, has been sent to Dallas for autopsy.

We asked today if the suspects were armed. The Upshur County sheriff told us that was still under investigation.

Bob Hallmark, reporting.

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