TRACY CITY, Tenn. (WKRN) – A Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper “violently” attacked; now the search is on for the driver of a yellow ATV in Grundy County.
It started as a minor traffic stop, but Sheriff Clint Shrum says now the driver of the 4-wheeler is facing charges for attempted murder.
“The four-wheeler wouldn’t stop,” Shrum told News 2. “Eventually it ended up in the ditch. When the trooper approached this rider, he was attacked violently. The trooper was attacked violently.”
Tire marks are still left behind near Flat Branch and Hobbs Hill roads, where the sheriff says a state trooper tried to stop the ATV driver for not wearing a helmet around 11:40 p.m. Sunday, July 3. The suspect tried to fight for the trooper’s gun and hold him in a choke hold, according to the sheriff.
The trooper suffered minor injuries and has been released from the hospital, his blood-covered shirt showing he put up a fight.
“Fortunately the blood seen on the shirt in the picture, that’s the suspect’s; that’s not our trooper’s, so that’s a good thing. We know he’s hurt,” Shrum said.
Officials are tracking the ATV driver’s path, gathering surveillance footage from the area as they follow tips from the community.
“It’s the fourth of July and so resources sometimes are limited, but I guarantee you we will find this guy,” Shrum said.
The sheriff called the incident “concerning,” and is determined to charge the driver with attempted murder.
“This is a trend that law enforcement is seeing all over the place,” he said. “It’s just troopers, sheriff’s deputies [and] police officers: they are just getting attacked all over the place, and it’s a narrative that’s being written all over the country, and we don’t know what we are facing anymore.
“We are in a small community here – 13,500 people. We are a tight-knit community and we don’t know what we are facing anymore here, and that’s really concerning to me. Hopefully we can get this thing solved today [and] get somebody in jail.”
The suspect is described as a white male, 6 feet, 2 inches tall, weighing 240 pounds with a short beard and driving a yellow 4-wheeler. The sheriff’s office said the suspect fled the scene with unknown injuries.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Grundy County Sheriff’s Office at 931-692-3466 or Central Dispatch at 931-924-2079.