Manhunt continues for fugitive accused of shooting at police officers three …

29 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Floyd Ray Cook Manhunt: Friends of Fugitive Rapist Nabbed.

LOUISVILLE — A manhunt for a fugitive accused of opening fire at police officers three times in two different states continued for a sixth day Thursday, continuing a search that has closed schools and stretched across a wide swath of this region. NASHVILLE — A Kentucky man accused of shooting a Tennessee police officer remains free after a manhunt Wednesday that ended with the arrest of his associates. “It does raise curiosity, these two suspects are known associates of Mr. Two people believed by police to be the fugitive’s accomplices were arrested and taken into custody overnight, but Floyd Ray Cook of Lebanon, Ky., remains on the loose after he slipped through the fingers of the Kentucky State Police in rural Cumberland County along the Tennessee border over the weekend. School officials in Cumberland County said Thursday that precautions are being taken, with heightened security and increased law enforcement presence at schools.

Two “dangerous” acquaintances — and possible accomplices — of Cook were detained on Wednesday night and being questioned following a chase and search in the woods. Cook was released on a $75,000 partially secured bond, but a month later, he failed to appear in Hardin County Circuit Court, so a bench warrant was issued for his arrest. Schools are open in Robertson County, Tennessee, but district spokesman Jim Bellis says schools in the White House area have a “heightened sense of screening” anyone on school property. Marshals, who joined the search for Cook earlier this week, spotted a car they believed to be associated with him at the gas station, just off Interstate 65 north of Nashville, according to the US marshal service. On Saturday afternoon in Algood, Tenn. — a small town on Interstate 40 midway between Nashville and Knoxville — Ahscari Valencia, an Algood police officer, pulled over a black Ford F-150 because a search of the plates revealed that its driver was wanted in Kentucky.

As Valencia approached the truck, police said, Cook pulled a handgun and fired multiple shots, striking Officer Valencia in the abdomen, a wound that could have been fatal if not for Valencia’s bulletproof vest. “Officer Valencia is doing fine and looking forward to getting back to regular duty,” said Beth Nelson, spokeswoman for the Putnam County Sheriff Office. The Tennessee highway patrol initially reported Wednesday that the occupants of the car, which they then believed to include Cook, fired at the marshals. When investigators began to approach the suspects’ vehicle, the driver tried to flee — striking two law enforcement vehicles and nearly striking a U.S. McCarty — who he said was found “in a field, covered in mud and soaking wet” — has an “extensive record” with multiple warrants out for her arrest, Miller added.

Miller said the community of White House should be proud of their police department. “This is a demonstration of what law enforcement can do when we communicate with each other. Cook — previously convicted of first-degree rape — is wanted on felony warrants out of Kentucky and for attempted murder of an officer after allegedly shooting Officer Ahscari Valencia once in the chest on Saturday in Tennessee. Marshals office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are taking the lead on the investigation, with the assistance of several other law enforcement agencies. For that crime, he was sentenced to life at Eddyville State Penitentiary, but was paroled at some point before Dec. 7, 1978, when he was arrested again for second degree assault.

On Thursday, June 16, 1988, Cook was one of eight inmates who escaped from Eddyville in what has been called, “The Great Escape of ’88.” Cook was apprehended near the prison, as were two others, while the remaining five escapees fled to Tennessee where they executed an elderly couple as part of their escape. She and Cook were separated as young children after they witnessed their mother’s murder in December 1960 at the hands of their stepfather; their father had gone blind and committed suicide a few years before. Several months ago, the Marion County sheriff’s office, making routine checks on the sex offenders in the county, discovered he was no longer living there, said sheriff Jimmy Clements. Cook was also indicted in July on charges of first-degree trafficking in methamphetamine and tampering with physical evidence, according to Hardin County court records in Kentucky. A swath of the border between Kentucky and Tennessee has been gripped with fear of the man authorities described as “armed, dangerous and desperate”.

Schools reopened Thursday in the Cumberland County district after classes were called off for three days this week out of fear that students might cross Cook’s path. After a massive police presence arrived in the area, police say they apprehended Cook’s associate, Troy Wayne, and a female associate, Katie McCarty. Throughout the night, helicopters and SWAT teams scoured the rural Tennessee neighborhood looking for Cook as residents fretted about the situation on social media. They pursued countless tips, and closed in on an area around Frein’s parents’ home in Canadensis, Penn., after he used his mobile phone to try contacting them, and the signal was traced to a location about three miles away. A calm voice could talk him down,” his sister said. “My heart is broken because I have lost him over and over again, but I will always love him.”

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