Son of Nashville police chief sought in shooting of 2 Tennessee officers: officials

Police in La Vergne, Tennessee, were searching for a suspect Saturday afternoon, after two officers were shot outside a Dollar General while investigating a stolen vehicle, La Vergne Police Chief Chris Moews said in a press conference. 

The suspect was later identified as John C. Drake, Jr., 38, the son of Metropolitan Nashville Police Chief John Drake. 

“I am shocked and deeply saddened to learn that my estranged son, with whom I have had very minimal contact over many years, is the suspect in this afternoon’s shooting of the two La Vergne police officers,” the chief said in a statement. “My thoughts and prayers are with the two officers, who I understand are now in stable condition at Vanderbilt.”

Moews said while the officers were investigating, “they had contact with a subject. They struggled with that subject and that suspect produced a handgun and fired shots.”

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He said that one of the officers, a nearly three-year veteran with the force, suffered a gunshot wound to his rear left shoulder, and the other officer, who has been with the department a year-and-a-half, was shot in the right groin and right forearm. Both are listed in stable condition. 

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Moews said the suspect is 5-foot-11 with a muscular build, facial hair and dreadlocks. He was wearing a black T-shirt with a white hockey mask emblem on the front with red lettering and gray pants. 

He was last seen heading northbound on Stones River Road.

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A shelter in place in order remained for the area as of 5:30 p.m. local time. “Avoid the area and report anything suspicious,” police said in a Facebook update. 

In his statement, Chief Drake added, “Despite my efforts and guidance in the early and teenage years, my son, John Drake Jr., now 38-years-old, resorted to years of criminal activity and is a convicted felon. He has not been a part of my life for quite some time. He now needs to be found and held accountable for his actions today. I hope that anyone who sees him or has information about him will contact law enforcement immediately.”

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