TBI identifies suspect accused of shooting at trooper in Greene County

Published: May. 18, 2018 at 6:37 AM EDT
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After claiming to be out of gas, TBI said a shooting suspect opened fire on a THP trooper while trying to escape in a stolen truck.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said they responded around 4:30 a.m. to I-81 South in Greene County, near Exit 23. They've identified the suspect as 25-year-old Kenneth C. Powell of Kingsport.

The Greene County Sheriff's Office said a Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper was involved, according to WJHL, the CBS affiliate in Johnson City.

TBI told WJHL the trooper approached the truck pulled over on a ramp leading to a weight station. Powell allegedly told the trooper he was out of gas, and the trooper discovered the truck was stolen. The Sullivan County Sheriff's Office confirmed the truck was stolen from a resident there.

TBI said the trooper tried to approach Powell again, and that's when the suspect attempted to flee and drove his vehicle into a median. That's when TBI said Powell allegedly fired his gun. The agency said the trooper returned fire.

Powell has since been taken to the hospital; his current condition is unknown. TBI reports the trooper was not injured.

TBI is on the scene and is continuing to investigate. The trooper involved will not be identified; TBI said it is deferring questions of that nature to THP.