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Son of police chief, wanted for the shooting of two officers, found dead, officials say

Wednesday, 25 October 2023 11:30 News

NASHVILLE, Tennessee - The son of the Nashville police chief, who was wanted for the shooting of two officers near a Dollar General store, has been found dead, authorities said.

Officers arrived at 15th South Avenue in Nashville on Tuesday evening, where they heard a muffled gunshot from an outbuilding and then discovered John K. Drake Jr. dead with a gunshot wound that appeared to be self-inflicted, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said in a statement. The statement was posted on social media. TBI will investigate Drake's death at the request of District Attorney Glenn Funk, and a full autopsy will be conducted as part of the investigation, the agency said.

Don Aaron, a spokesperson for the Metro Nashville Police, said that the younger Drake carjacked a vehicle from a home southeast of downtown on Tuesday evening, as reported by WSMV-TV. According to Aaron, Drake asked a man and a woman to give him a ride in front of a house, and when they couldn't or wouldn't, he pulled out a gun and demanded the car in the driveway. Drake drove away.

Shortly after that, police noticed the vehicle and followed it to the Edgehill area south of downtown, where it crashed. Aaron said that Drake fled to a shed behind a house, and when police surrounded the area, a gunshot was heard.

38-year-old Drake, the son of Nashville Police Department Chief John Drake, was accused of shooting two officers near a Dollar General store in La Vergne, a city located approximately 20 miles (32 kilometers) southeast of Nashville, on Saturday afternoon.

Police had warned that Drake, who was wanted on two counts of attempted first-degree murder, was considered armed and dangerous. TBI had included Drake in its most wanted list with a reward of up to $2,500 for information leading to his arrest.

Officers Ashley Bolejack and Gregory Kern were investigating the stolen car near the store when they struggled with the suspect, who pulled out a gun and fired at them, according to La Vergne Police Chief Christopher Muzz. Both officers underwent treatment and were discharged from Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Chief Drake released a statement on Saturday confirming that his son was a suspect in the shooting. He said that his son had been involved in criminal activity for years and had not been a part of his life for some time.

"Despite my efforts and leadership during his early and teenage years, my son, John Drake Jr., who is now 38 years old, has engaged in criminal activity for years and is a convicted criminal," Drake said. "He now needs to be found and held accountable for his actions."

In a statement posted on social media, Muzz thanked all the officers involved in the pursuit on Tuesday evening for their "resilience and dedication to bringing the case to a conclusion" and said that they were praying for Chief Drake and his family.

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