The North Carolina Highway Patrol identified a suspect in the fatal shooting of a state trooper.
Raheem Cole Dashanell Davis, 20, of 2089 Braswell Road in Chadbourn, is charged with first degree murder for the death of Trooper Kevin K. Conner, according to a press release from the NC Department of Public Safety.
Around 12:15 a.m. on Wednesday, a state trooper stopped a white GMC pickup truck for a speeding violation on U.S. Highway 701 near Sellers Town Rd. in Columbus County, the press release says. The driver of the pickup truck pulled over onto the shoulder and the trooper approached the vehicle. The driver then fired several shots, striking the trooper.
“After assaulting the trooper, the driver fled the scene, traveling into Fair Bluff. Local police attempted to stop the vehicle and the driver fled, initiating a brief pursuit,” states the release. “The driver of the pickup then fled on foot after his vehicle became disabled while attempting to cross over a railroad crossing. After an extensive search, authorities located the driver and placed him in custody without incident. He was transported to the Columbus County Jail by investigators.”
Trooper Conner was an 11-year-veteran, assigned to Troop B, District 5 in Columbus County, according to the release. Trooper Conner died from his injuries after being transported to a local hospital.
“It’s very upsetting. I knew Kevin personally, people here in this community thought of Kevin as an upstanding citizen and an upstanding officer to the highway patrol,” said First Sgt. Michael Baker with the NC Highway Patrol. “He was a family man, his loss is very tragic to our organization as well as the entire community here in Columbus County.”
“The Highway Patrol family is mourning the loss of a hero and will forever be changed by the tragic events that have occurred,” said Colonel Glenn McNeill Jr., commander of the State Highway Patrol. “We ask everyone to please keep Trooper Conner’s family and all who knew him in your thoughts and prayers.”
“We extend our deepest sympathy to Trooper Conner’s family,” said Public Safety Secretary Erik A. Hooks. “Trooper Conner was killed while protecting and serving his community. We mourn our loss and will continue to support his family. We are grateful for his service and honor the men and women who serve in harm’s way, each and every day.”
WBTW News13 will provide updates as we receive them.