Alabama man shot after pointing gun at deputy, state trooper
DEKALB COUNTY, AL (WRCB) -- A man who attempted to flee from Dekalb County deputies and Alabama state troopers was shot and killed when he pulled a weapon on the officers.
Just after 5:00 p.m. Friday afternoon, a deputy of the DeKalb County Sheriff's Office and an Alabama State Trooper were on a routine patrol when they spotted a four-wheeler on Highway 117 in the Cider area.
The driver, later identified as Monroe Curtis Smith, in his 40s of the Pea Ridge community, fled when the officers attempted to stop him and turned off onto a secondary road. As officers attempted to approach him, the suspect left the roadway and drove the four-wheeler through a private property in an attempt to elude them.
At one point during the chase, the officers saw the suspect retrieve a firearm from the four-wheeler. When Smith reached an area where the four-wheeler could not be driven due to large amounts of debris from last year's tornadoes, he abandoned the four-wheeler and ran.
The officers continued the chase by foot. When they rounded a curve in the trail, Smith was lying in wait. He stood up, pointing his weapon at the officers. The suspect was ordered to drop his weapon. After given several verbal commands, refusing to do so and continuing to point his firearm directly at the officers, they fired at him.
The officers notified emergency response and rendered CPR until the arrival of an ambulance. The DeKalb Ambulance Service worked on him with no success. Coroner Tom Wilson pronounced Mr. Smith as dead on the scene at 5:13 PM.
The scene was secured and ABI agents were called as per standard procedures. District Attorney Mike O'Dell, who was also notified, ordered an autopsy and the body was sent to Forensics in Huntsville. The investigation has been turned over to the ABI.
"These are tragic circumstances for all parties involved," said Dekalb County Sheriff Jimmy Harris. "While I have sympathy for the family in this matter, I also have great concern for the officers and their safety. It's unfortunate. We always hope situations like this can be avoided."
Sheriff Harris added, "From everything I've been able to see in this case, it appears that the officers presented themselves as they should have. We will rely on the ABI and await their findings."
The deputy was placed on administrative leave with pay, which Harris noted is standard policy.