A man was shot and killed Friday night on DeKalb County Road 667 off Alabama Highway 117. DeKalb County Sheriff Jimmy Harris confirms that the man was shot after a pursuit which included deputies and Alabama state troopers.
Sheriff Harris released the following statement Saturday afternoon:
Around 5 pm, June 8th, a deputy of the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office and an Alabama State Trooper were on a routine patrol when they spotted a four-wheeler on Highway 117 in the Ider area. The driver, later identified as Monroe Curtis Smith, in his 40s of the Pea Ridge community, fled when the officers attempted to stop him and turned off onto a secondary road. As officers attempted to approach him, the suspect left the roadway and drove the four-wheeler through a private property in an attempt to elude them.
At one point during the chase, the officers saw the suspect retrieve a firearm from the four-wheeler. When Smith reached an area where the four-wheeler could not be driven due to large amounts of debris from last year’s tornadoes, he abandoned the four-wheeler and ran.
The officers continued the chase by foot. When they rounded a curve in the trail, Smith was lying in wait. He stood up, pointing his weapon at the officers. The suspect was ordered to drop his weapon. After given several verbal commands, refusing to do so and continuing to point his firearm directly at the officers, they fired at him.
The officers notified emergency response and rendered CPR until the arrival of an ambulance. The DeKalb Ambulance Service worked on him with no success. Coroner Tom Wilson pronounced Mr. Smith as dead on the scene at 5:13 pm. The scene was secured and ABI agents were called as per standard procedures. District Attorney Mike O’Dell, who was also notified, ordered an autopsy and the body was sent to Forensics in Huntsville. The investigation has been turned over to the ABI.
Sheriff Jimmy Harris said, “These are tragic circumstances for all parties involved. While I have sympathy for the family in this matter, I also have great concern for the officers and their safety. It’s unfortunate. We always hope situations like this can be avoided. From everything I’ve been able to see in this case, it appears that the officers presented themselves as they should have. We will rely on the ABI and await their findings. Our officer is on administrative leave with pay, which is our policy. We will cooperate fully in this investigation and await results. At the conclusion of the investigation, findings will be presented to grand jury by District Attorney Mike O’Dell. This is an open investigation so we can’t give any further comment. We are now releasing the name of the suspect as his family has already been notified. ”