2nd arrest made in shooting death of NC state trooper

Authorities have arrested a second person in connection to the shooting death last week of a North Carolina Highway Patrol trooper.

Trooper Kevin K. Conner was shot and killed while conducting a traffic stop on U.S. 701 near Sellers Town Road in Columbus County, officials said. Authorities have arrested two men in connection with the shooting, 20-year-old Raheem Cole Dashanell Davis and Chauncy Askew, 18.

 

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Update 12:40 p.m. EDT Oct. 23: At a news conference Tuesday, Columbus County District Attorney Jon David confirmed that officials in Loris, South Carolina, arrested 18-year-old Chauncy Askew earlier in the day in connection to Conner's death.

“Our evidence today conclusively shows that there were two people in the truck at the time that Kevin Conner made that fateful stop, and both of them are now in custody,” David said. “So the public should rest assured that the folks responsible for this matter are in custody.”

Askew remained jailed in South Carolina on Tuesday. David said he would be extradited to North Carolina to face charges.

Authorities previously arrested Raheem Cole Dashanell Davis, 20, in connection to the case.

“Now, who will enjoy what level of responsibility and who will be charged with what remains to be seen,” David said.

Authorities continue to investigate.

Update 11:20 a.m. EDT Oct. 23: The Columbus County District Attorney's Office said in a statement Tuesday that a second suspect has been arrested in the shooting death of Conner. District Attorney Jon David planned a news conference on Tuesday to provide more information.

Additional details were not immediately available.

Update 10:50 p.m. EDT Oct. 17: Authorities arrested 20-year-old Raheem Cole Dashanell Davis in connection with the murder of North Carolina Highway Patrol trooper Kevin K. Conner.

Conner was shot and killed early Wednesday while conducting a traffic stop in the southeastern part of the state, according to the Department of Public Safety.

Credit: Columbus County Sheriff's Office

Credit: Columbus County Sheriff's Office

Update 12:25 p.m. EDT Oct. 17: Following the shooting, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper shared a statement on the loss of Trooper Conner:

"The tragic loss of Trooper Kevin Conner of the NC State Highway Patrol weighs heavily on our hearts. We are forever grateful for his devoted service and selfless commitment to protecting the people of North Carolina. Our prayers are with his family and friends and his colleagues in law enforcement."

WRAL-TV reported that Conner was credited with helping save lives after a 2011 fiery head-on crash in Columbus County. The station reported Conner used an extinguisher to put out flames and that he and another trooper provided first aid while waiting for paramedics.

Update 9:50 a.m. EDT Oct. 17: Baker said that at around 12:15 a.m., Conner stopped a white GMC pickup truck for a speeding violation on rural U.S. 701. The driver of the truck pulled over onto the shoulder and fired several shots as the trooper approached, Baker said.

The suspect fled and Conner was taken to a hospital, where he died.

Baker said the driver then headed about 20 miles west to Fair Bluff, near the South Carolina state line, where he was pursued by police. The suspect’s truck became disabled on railroad tracks and the suspect fled on foot. Authorities said the suspect was arrested around 4 a.m. after an extensive search.

The suspect's name has not been released and charges are pending, authorities said.

 

“The Highway Patrol family is mourning the loss of a hero and will forever be changed by the tragic events that have occurred,” said Col. Glenn McNeill Jr., commander of the state highway patrol. “We ask everyone to please keep Trooper Conner’s family and all who knew him in your thoughts and prayers.”

Conner was an 11-year veteran assigned to Troop B, District 5, in Columbus County.

“We extend our deepest sympathy to Trooper Conner’s family,” said Public Safety Secretary Erik A. Hooks. “Trooper Conner was killed while protecting and serving his community. We mourn our loss and will continue to support his family. We are grateful for his service and honor the men and women who serve in harm’s way, each and every day.”

 

Condolences for the trooper poured out from a number of law enforcement agencies on social media. Baker said the patrol was asking that people keep the trooper, his family and the entire organization in their prayers.

"We are definitely grieving as a result of our loss," he said.

Original report: Authorities said the trooper, whose name has not been released, was shot just after midnight while conducting a traffic stop on U.S. 701 near Sellers Town Road in Columbus County, just south of Whiteville.

The trooper was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

After an extensive search, authorities were able to find the suspect in nearby woods and take him into custody.

The suspect's name also has not been released.

The Associated Press and the Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.

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