Note: This story contains details about self-harm. If you or someone you know may be struggling with self-harm or suicidal thoughts, you can call the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255) any time day or night, or chat online. Crisis Text Line also provides free, 24/7, confidential support via text message to people in crisis when they dial 741741. This story also involves details of domestic violence. If you need assistance, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.
Police say a sergeant missed when he shot at a man they believe shot two women Friday evening in West Nashville during a domestic dispute.
When 54-year-old Jeffrey Carlson encountered Sgt. Michael Hunnicutt, the man raised a gun to his chin and fired one round before collapsing. Don Aaron, a spokesperson with MNPD, said Hunnicutt, a 16-year police veteran, then fired a reactionary round, but missed.
Carlson was transported to Vanderbilt University Medical Center where he died. Both women sustained non-life threatening injuries, Aaron said.
A call came into 911 about 5:20 p.m. about a shooting at a home in the 5700 block of California Avenue, the residence of Carlson's ex-girlfriend. At the scene, the homeowner's 79-year-old mother, was found in the front year with multiple, critical gunshot wounds, police said.
Moments after finding the first victim, police found Carlson's ex-girlfriend about half a mile away in the back yard of a home in the 1500 block of 52nd Avenue where neighbors were giving medical aid, police said.
According to police, the woman told investigators that when she came home Carlson was inside and immediately shot her. She ran out the back door. The woman's mother was then shot before she tried to run out the front door.
Carlson also ran out the front door and attempted to carjack a vehicle in the 5700 block of California Avenue.
MNPD said they had no prior reports of domestic violence between Carlson and the women.
Hunnicutt will be placed on administrative assignment, Aaron said, as are all officers who fire their weapon. The Tennessee Bureau of Investigations is handling the investigation into Carlson's death. MNPD will investigate the shooting of the two women.
Police release camera footage
Metro Nashville police released body and in-car camera footage from the scene late Friday night.
The minute and 45 second long video starts with Hunnicut's in-car camera as he pulls up behind Carlson near the intersection of 55th and Tennessee avenues. Hunnicut gets out of his patrol car, draws his weapon and advances slowly on Carlson whose back is to the officer.
Show me your hands," Hunnicut says.
In the video, Carlson takes about 6 more steps before turning around, taking a wide stance and drawing his hands, with a gun, up under his chin.
"Put the gun down," Hunnicut says.
"No," Carlson responds.
Hunnicut repeats the command twice more and again Carlson tells him no each time.
"Do it now," the officer says.
"No," Carlson says for a fourth time.
Hunnicut tells him one more time but before he can finish his sentence Carlson fires. Immediately after, Hunnicut fires his gun.
"Start me medics to 55th and Tennessee," Hunnicut calls into his radio.
The officer approached Carlson, whose face is blurred out in the body-camera footage, and starts to secure his hands as backup pulls up to the scene.
Rachel Wegner and Kirsten Fiscus contributed to this story.
A police shooting is under investigation at 54th & Tennessee Avenues. An MNPD Sgt fired on a man suspected of shooting two women in a domestic violence incident minutes earlier. He is also believed to have fired his gun in the presence of the sergeant. pic.twitter.com/JMdoUyP6ES
— Metro Nashville PD (@MNPDNashville) March 25, 2023
This article originally appeared on Nashville Tennessean: Nashville police shooting under investigation in West Nashville