Lakeem Keonn Scott, an African-American Army veteran who served in South Korea, took up position and fired at passing cars. He killed one woman and wounded three others, including a law enforcement officer. Ostensibly, he had become angered over police shootings of Black men in St. Paul, MN and Baton Rouge, LA this past week. However, neighbors and family members are struggling to believe that Mr. Scott chose to engage in such violent acts. Scott himself was wounded by police in the incident as he traded gunfire with authorities. He remains hospitalized in serious, but stable, condition.
July 9, 2016 at 6:40 am
BRISTOL, Tenn. (AP) — Friends and family of a black Army veteran accused of shooting at passing cars and police on a Tennessee highway are struggling to accept that he became violent in response to police killings of African-Americans.
One woman died and three others were wounded, including an officer, as police traded gunfire early Thursday with the suspect, identified as Lakeem Keon Scott, 37.
“I will never believe that, never,” said his neighbor, Alan Lavasser, who is white. “Because he was always nice to me and my wife and everyone around here. No way I would ever believe that it was racially motivated.”
Scott – allegedly armed with an assault rifle, a pistol and a large amount of ammunition – was wounded in the shootout and remains hospitalized in serious but stable condition.
In preliminary conversations on Friday, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said he cited anger over the police killings of black men.
“A thorough understanding of his motivation for this incident remains central to the ongoing investigative work,” a law enforcement statement said.
Gunman who opened fire on Tennessee highway was motivated by police shootings, authorities say, LA Times