MAYNARDVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A man wanted in connection with a fatal shooting in Tennessee has been arrested following a two-day manhunt that unsettled a community in Virginia’s Appalachian Mountains, authorities said Thursday.
Jason Dockery was taken into custody at about 2:45 p.m. near Maynardville in Tennessee’s Union County, which is outside Knoxville, authorities said. The manhunt ensued after Tuesday’s fatal shooting of a woman in Anderson County, which is also outside Knoxville.
Dockery led police on a car chase Tuesday that ended in Virginia’s Lee County, where he ran into the woods, authorities said.
By Wednesday evening, authorities said Dockery was known to have hitchhiked back to eastern Tennessee.
Shain Vowell, a captain with the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office, told The Associated Press Thursday that law enforcement is considering Dockery a “person of interest.” He had previously been described by law enforcement officials in news releases as both a “person of interest” and a homicide suspect.
Anderson County court records do not show recent cases for Dockery that might indicate whether he has an attorney who can comment on his behalf.
The Anderson County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release that Tuesday’s shooting occurred in the Heiskell area. Someone had called 911 to report “a man had shot a woman while stopped on the side of the road.” The woman was later identified as Shystie Ranea Mayberry.
Authorities began to pursue Dockery, 44, of Knoxville, as he drove his Chevrolet Sonic that afternoon in Tennessee’s Claiborne County.
The chase ended when Dockery abandoned his car in Virginia’s Lee County and fled into the woods near the community of Ewing, authorities said. As multiple law enforcement agencies searched for Dockery, local officials urged residents to lock their doors and secure their vehicles. Some schools were closed Wednesday.
By Wednesday evening, Lee County Sheriff Gary Parsons announced that Dockery had left the area, hitchhiking back to Tennessee.
The U.S. Marshals had offered a reward of up to a $5,000 for information that led to Dockery’s arrest.