Rural King shooting victim identified, suspect arrested

Law enforcement, including the Knox County Sheriff’s Office, responded to a North Knox County shooting Thursday morning, officials told WVLT News.
Authorities in Tennessee say a store employee has died while trying to stop a shoplifter. (Source: WVLT)
Published: Dec. 22, 2022 at 11:34 AM EST|Updated: Dec. 28, 2022 at 9:11 AM EST
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HALLS, Tenn. (WVLT) - Friday night, the Knox County Sheriff’s Office identified Thursday morning’s fatal shooting victim at the Rural King as 23-year-old Tristan Smith of Powell. He was a Rural King employee, who was shot and killed in Halls Thursday morning, according to the Knox County Sheriff’s Office.

Knox County Sheriff's Office has arrested the man wanted in the death of the Rural King employee.

Around 10:40 a.m., officials responded to the Rural King to a possible shooting. Once on the scene, deputies learned that the suspect was attempting to shoplift ammunition and bungee cords when an employee approached them.

KCSO deputies arrested 18-year-old Larry McBee early Friday morning just after 3:30 A.M, in the 3000 block of McDonald Road in Knoxville.

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Knox County Sheriff Tom Spangler said that over 40 officers were involved in the search overnight, including assistance from Blount and Grainger Counties.

Spangler said that after the shooting McBee fled the scene in a car that he had driven to Rural King. Deputies were able to get security videos from other businesses in the area to assist in identifying McBee.

Spangler also said in a press conference that the employee and suspect got into a “scuffle” outside behind the business when the suspect shot the employee with a small caliber gun. Officials said the employee, a white male approximately age 23, died in the shooting.

Spangler said that McBee will be charged with second degree murder and several other charges.

Officials had released a picture of the suspect Thursday night from the Rural King store in Halls that helped deputies identify McBee.

The suspect has dark hair, around 5′8″ to 5′10″ and wearing dark grey sweatpants or light grey...
The suspect has dark hair, around 5′8″ to 5′10″ and wearing dark grey sweatpants or light grey shorts, carrying a blue backpack and possibly wearing a toboggan.(KCSO)
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