Suspect accused in death of Hendersonville officer pleads guilty

Crime Tracker
Emani Martin

Emani Martin (Source: Metro Nashville Police Department)

HENDERSONVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — A suspect charged in the December death of a Hendersonville police officer has pleaded guilty to evading arrest in the case.

According to Sumner County District Attorney Ray Whitley, Emani Martin will be sentenced in the death of Officer Spencer Bristol. Other charges in Sumner County against Martin including reckless homicide were dropped because Martin was the passenger in the vehicle driven by Kevin Jordan.

Martin was supposed to go on trial on October 6. Whitley tells News 2 that the widow of Officer Bristol, Lauren Bristol, agreed and was in favor of Martin’s plea.

Kevin Jordan
Kevin Jordan (Source: Metro Nashville Police Department)

Jordan continues to face charges of reckless homicide, evading arrest, and reckless endangerment out of Sumner County. Jordan’s case is separate and will go to trial, according to the District Attorney’s office. In January, a Metro judge dropped the reckless homicide charge out of Davidson County for Jordan.

While Martin faces only an evading arrest charge in Sumner County, he additionally faces charges in Davidson County as well.

According to Tennessee Highway Patrol, Master Patrol Officer Spencer Bristol chased a vehicle from Hendersonville into the Goodlettsville area on the night of Dec. 30.

When the suspect’s vehicle struck another vehicle on Vietnam Veterans Boulevard at I-65 South, investigators said Jordan, the driver of the car, was immediately arrested.

Martin, a passenger, reportedly fled the car and ran across the interstate toward the Rivergate area. Officer Bristol chased after him on foot and was struck by an oncoming car, troopers said.

Spencer Bristol
Master Patrol Officer Spencer Bristol (Courtesy: Hendersonville Police Department)

Officer Bristol was transported to Tristar Skyline Medical Center, where he died from his injuries.

The 31-year-old, a United States Navy veteran, is survived by his wife and young daughter.

If convicted on the evading arrest charge, Martin could face anywhere from two to four years in prison. A sentencing hearing has been set for Friday, November 20 at 1 p.m.

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