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Fleeing suspect shot by police in Johnson City

Becky Campbell • Jan 30, 2008 at 12:00 AM

JOHNSON CITY — A Johnson City man who was shot late Tuesday when he allegedly tried to run over a city police officer also held a box cutter to a man’s throat several hours earlier, according to court documents charging the man with aggravated assault, aggravated assault on an officer and other related charges.

Christopher R. Green, 27, 817 Hamilton St., was jailed Wednesday morning on charges of second-offense DUI, second-offense driving on a revoked license, felony evading arrest, resisting arrest, stop sign violation, aggravated assault, and aggravated assault on a police officer.

He was taken to Johnson City Medical Center Tuesday night and released Wednesday around 7:30 a.m. after being treated for a wound to the side of his face.

Green fled from a Johnson City Police Department officer Tuesday afternoon, according to an affidavit filed by JCPD Investigator Michael Barron, when the officer attempted to stop him in reference to an incident at 2 Mel Circle, No. 8.

In that incident, a man told police that Green confronted him in the hallway outside his apartment, held a box cutter to his throat and “told him he was going to cut his throat,” JCPD Master Police Officer Joe Jaynes wrote in a court paper.

Green then allegedly began beating on all the apartment doors and threatened to cut everyone inside before leaving the area in a green Nissan.

On Tuesday evening, JCPD Officer Alex Perry saw Green’s Nissan on Lamont Street. Perry called for assistance before activating his blue lights. But when he tried to stop Green at the intersection of Lamont and Sidney streets, Green accelerated, according to the court records.

Barron’s report indicates Green’s Pathfinder “glanced off a power pole, went through the chain link fence of Veterans (Affairs) property into the cemetery.”

Green’s vehicle was on the cemetery’s wet grass, and he began revving his engine while Perry was standing in front of the vehicle, Barron stated in the report.

“He started to get traction and was moving toward Officer Perry in the vehicle, putting him in fear for his life and personal safety,” Barron wrote.

Barron’s affidavit does not specify that any officer fired a weapon, but that Perry and “Officer Javier Mata were eventually able to subdue the driver.”

Another affidavit related to the incident — which charges Green with DUI, driving on a revoked license, evading arrest, resisting arrest and stop sign violation — also does not mention anything about an officer firing his weapon and injuring Green.

But a JCPD news release about the incident confirmed the officer who was standing in front of the vehicle shot at Green to avoid being hit by the vehicle. The release did not indicate how many times the officer fired but stated one round struck Green in the left side of his face.

Police Chief John Lowry said the investigation has been turned over to Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.

According to the JCPD’s general order on use of force, deadly force is allowed when there is “an imminent and immediate danger of death or serious bodily injury to the officer or other persons present and that danger is caused by the aggressive actions of the suspect.”

The general order also specifies that the officer involved in the use of deadly force that results in the “serious bodily injury to another person” will be relieved of normal duties and placed on paid administrative assignment.

Lowry would not confirm the status of any officer involved in the incident, but only referred to the general order when questioned. Any questions about the shooting itself he referred to the TBI.

TBI spokeswoman Kristin Helm said the investigation is just getting under way and could take some time before it concludes.

“I can’t confirm anything said early in the investigation. Anytime there is an officer shooting, we work it very diligently and thoroughly to make sure all the i’s are dotted and t’s are crossed,” Helm said.

“When our investigative file is complete, we will turn it over to the district attorney (general) for review,” she said.

Green’s prior convictions include simple assault, possession of a prohibited weapon, reckless driving, auto burglary, theft, burglary, failure to appear, failure to report to jail, and violation of an order of protection.

According to U.S. National Cemetery Director Artis Parker, the crash tore down 135 feet of the fence, and some of the turf was damaged. No headstones were damaged.

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