Kingsport PD: 2 juveniles believed to be connected to multiple violent felonies apprehended

Local

KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) – UPDATE 10/23/21 5:45 p.m. – Two juveniles wanted in connection to a series of crimes in Kingsport have been arrested, according to a release from the Kingsport Police Department (KPD).

During the past month, the KPD, along with other local, state and federal agencies, have been actively investigating a surge of vehicle thefts in the Tri-Cities and Northeast Tennessee area.

According to the release, the department’s criminal investigations division has found evidence that leads them to believe the crimes are being committed by a group of juveniles. The department also believes that the juveniles were in possession of firearms.

Two of the juveniles were spotted by officers inside a vehicle in the Borden Mill Village neighborhood, KPD reports.

The juveniles reportedly ran from the police and a chase on foot ensued into the nearby Riverview neighborhood. The two were caught by police and arrested.

The identities of the juveniles are being withheld at this time, but one suspect is a 16-year-old black male, and the other is a 13-year-old black male.

According to the release the charges against the 16-year-old male are:

  • Criminal resposibily for facilitaltion of a felony (Attempted first degree murder)
  • Felony reckless endangerment with a deadly weapon
  • Reckless endangerment
  • Theft over $10,000
  • Posession of stolen property over $15,000

The charges for the 13-year-old juvenile are:

  • Criminal attempt to commit first degree murder
  • Four counts of aggravted assualt
  • Theft over $10,000
  • Posession of stolen property over $15,000
  • Vandalism under $1,000

Additional juveniles are still believed to be involved. The investigation remains open and active. The names of all the juvenile suspects have not been released.

The release states that the department has linked the group of juveniles to at least a dozen stolen vehicles around the area, many of which have been recovered.

The investigation has determined that the stolen vehicles have been used in multiple violent felonies such as drive-by shootings, aggravated assaults, attempted carjackings and the brandishing of firearms.

The release also provides a timeline of recent violent acts that the juveniles are suspected of taking part in.

On Oct. 22, an 18-year-old male was reportedly shot in the leg during a drive-by shooting at Reedy Place in Kingsport. The unnamed male was transported to a local area hospital to be treated for his injuries. His current condition is unknown.

On Oct. 23, a police officer with the Kingsport Police Department saw what they believed to be some of the juveniles in one of the stolen vehicles in Lynn Garden in Kingsport. A vehicle pursuit ensued, during which the suspected juveniles opened fire, shooting at the pursuing officer. The juveniles successfully evaded the officer, and no one was hit by the gunfire.

Also, on Oct. 23, deputies with the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) reported they saw some of the suspected juvenile offenders in a stolen vehicle on South John B. Dennis Highway in Kingsport. A pursuit ensued with the juveniles also opening fire on the deputies in pursuit. Two SCSO vehicles were hit by gunfire during the pursuit; however, nobody was believed to be hit by the gunfire. The juveniles successfully evaded the SCSO deputies, according to the release.

Again, on Oct. 23, a newspaper carrier reportedly came into contact with one of the suspected juvenile offenders that was attempting to steal a car on Forest Ridge Drive in Kingsport. The KPD states that shots were fired as the attempted thief fled the scene on foot. Once again, it is believed that nobody was struck by the gunfire.

Law enforcement asks citizens to contact 911 if they see any suspicious or criminal activity involving juveniles, especially in that case that it involved either of the vehicles described above.

Anonymous tips can be provided online by using the link provided here.

The release states that many of the vehicles have been stolen from neighborhoods. Law enforcement is encouraging citizens to check their home surveillance systems or video doorbell footage for any suspicious activity and immediately report it to the Kingsport Police Department.

The release also provides some tips for deterring vehicle theft such as:

  • Never leaving a vehicle unlocked and unnattended
  • Never leaving keys in a parked/ unoccupied car
  • Never leaving keys in unsecure locatiosn
  • Never leaving a vehicle running unless it is occupied by a driver
  • Never leave any valueables in plain sight in vehicles

You can read the full release by clicking here.

The release ends by saying that as the multi-agency investigation is still ongoing, no additional information will be released at this time.

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