Search continues for son of Nashville police chief, suspected of shooting two police officers


Police in Tennessee are searching for the estranged son of Nashville’s police chief as the suspect in the shooting of two suburban police officers outside a Dollar General store. Police say the shooting happened during an altercation Saturday night in La Vergne, a suburb of Nashville.

A statement issued by The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation shared a statewide blue alert in an effort to locate the suspect, John Drake Jr.  They warned that the 38-year-old, who is now wanted on two counts of attempted first-degree murder, should be considered “armed and very dangerous.” The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, which issues blue alerts when there’s “an imminent threat to public safety and law enforcement personnel,” described the suspect as 5 feet, 11 inches tall, weighing 195 pounds. He has black hair and brown eyes. The agency said he was last seen in La Vergne around 2:30 p.m. Saturday “in the area of Stones River Road near Lake Forest Drive, wearing a black t-shirt with a hockey mask on it with red accents, and gray sweatpants.”

Metro Nashville Police Chief John Drake confirmed that the suspect is his son: “I am shocked and deeply saddened to learn that my estranged son, with whom I have had very minimal contact over many years, is the suspect in this afternoon’s shooting of the two La Vergne police officers. Despite my efforts and guidance in the early and teenage years, my son, John Drake Jr., now 38-years-old, resorted to years of criminal activity and is a convicted felon. He has not been a part of my life for quite some time.” Chief Drake added that his thoughts are with the wounded officers.

La Vergne Police Chief Christopher Moews said at a press conference: “Our officers were investigating a stolen vehicle. During that investigation, they made contact with a subject. They struggled with that subject, and during that struggle, the suspect produced a handgun and fired shots.” Moews said that the officers, who have both been with the force for less than three years, were transported to Vanderbilt University Medical Center with one officer shot in the shoulder, and the other shot in the groin and forearm. One officer was released Saturday evening and the other remains in the hospital in stable condition.

Editorial credit: Carla Sloke /

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