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“He could have hit me” North Carolina man shot, killed by officers on I-75 after suspected robbery

The Campbell County Sheriff’s Office and the Tennessee Highway Patrol responded to the attempted robbery and got in a pursuit with the male suspect on I-75 North.
Published: Oct. 21, 2021 at 10:58 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 22, 2021 at 6:14 PM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Michael Raymond Hilton, 34, from North Carolina died after being shot by officers Thursday night, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.

In a report from the TBI, Thursday night, Caryville Police officers and Campbell County Sheriff’s Deputies were both following a car connected to a robbery in Jacksboro.

Authorities say police followed the car along Appalachian Highway and tried to pull the Hilton over, but he refused to stop.

Police chased the car onto Interstate 75, and at mile marker 137, the car crashed into several others that were stopped in a construction zone, including a Tennessee Highway Patrol cruiser that was parked behind a disabled vehicle. Drivers, who sat in traffic for hours, said it was nothing like they’ve ever seen before.

“He could have hit me. He could have hit others,” truck driver Joseph Persad said.

Authorities said police tried to take the Hilton into custody, but “the situation escalated”, and the THP trooper, a Caryville officer and a Campbell County deputy shot at the man, hitting him.Hilton was pronounced dead at the scene, and a woman in the car was also hurt. She was taken to the hospital for treatment, and her condition is unknown. TBI told WVLT News Friday evening the woman was not hurt during the shooting.

“We’re out here and you’re not sure when you leave your house if you’ll go back to your family. It’s something to be worried and concerned about,” Persad said.

LaFollette Mayor Michael Stanfield previously told WVLT News that the driver reportedly wrecked on the interstate, exited the vehicle and fired shots at police.

The Tennessee Highway Patrol said the trooper involved in the shooing was not injured.

The TBI is investigating the incident and findings will be shared with the District Attorney General for further review.

The DA will then decide whether to file any charges.

A portion of I-75 was closed throughout the night and reopened around 3 a.m. ET. You can check traffic on the TDOT website.

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