Fox News, August 3, 2015
The alleged gunman who shot and killed a Memphis police officer during a traffic stop was free on supervised release stemming from a bank robbery conviction, FOX13 reported.
Tremaine Wilbourn, 29, was sentenced to 121 months in prison in February for the robbery. But Wilbourn, who had also been arrested in 2014 on a charge of aggravated robbery, paid a fine and agreed to mental health treatment on July 7.
Less than a month later, a warrant for first-degree murder has been issued for Wilbourn.
Officer Sean Bolton, a 33-year-old former Marine who served a tour in Iraq, may have interrupted an illicit drug transaction when he encountered a Mercedes-Benz illegally parked on a Memphis street Saturday night, Police Director Toney Armstrong said at a Sunday evening press conference.
After Bolton illuminated the Mercedes with his spotlight, he approached the vehicle and was confronted by its passenger, who allegedly shot Bolton multiple times after a struggle, the director said.
Armstrong told reporters that 1.7 grams of marijuana was found inside the vehicle.
“He’s a coward,” Armstrong said of the suspect, Wilbourn, “you gunned down, you murdered a police officer, for less than 2 grams of marijuana. You literally destroyed a family.”
The driver of the vehicle turned himself in to authorities Sunday morning, and has since been released without charge, Armstrong said at the press conference.
Police were initially alerted about 9:18 p.m. Saturday that an officer had been shot multiple times. Armstrong said the officer was transported in critical condition to a hospital, where he died.
Bolton is the third Memphis officer to be fatally shot in slightly more than four years. Officer Tim Warren was killed while responding to a shooting at a downtown Memphis hotel in July 2011. In December 2012, Officer Martoiya Lang was killed while serving a warrant.