Checkpoint struggle leads to shooting, pursuit

Published 3:01 am Sunday, March 8, 2009

A routine checkpoint led to the shooting of a motorist.

Thursday, the Poplarville Police Department was conducting a driver’s license checkpoint on Mississippi Highway 53, when a white Dodge Magnum pulled up to the checkpoint at about 11:45 p.m. The officer asked the male driver for his driver’s license and registration, according to a press release from the Poplarville Police Department.

At that point, the driver became nervous and failed to comply with the request, to the point that a struggle was involved between the officer and the unnamed driver, the release states.

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“He didn’t want to get out of the vehicle, that was the problem,” Poplarville Police Chief Charlie Fazende said.

The driver was eventually shocked with a Taser in the struggle Fazende said.

“That just didn’t seem to help at all,” Fazende said.

One officer on scene fired a shot and hit the driver in the left shoulder, the release states.

Fazende said that after the driver was shot, he sped off and a pursuit, which lasted about six to seven miles, took place. The pursuit ended on Mississippi Highway 26 heading towards Wiggins at the driveway of Catfish Cottage, Fazende said. Fazende would not comment on how the pursuit ended and said he is currently unaware of the driver’s motivation for his actions.

The release states the driver’s wound is not life threatening and he was transported to Forrest General Hospital in Hattiesburg.

Names of the driver and the officers involved in the incident are not being released since the investigation was turned over to the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation, the release states.