Posted on October 23, 2023

Nashville Police Chief Orders Manhunt for His Son John C Drake Jr. After Two Cops Were Shot Outside a Dollar General

Laura Parnaby, Daily Mail, October 22, 2023

Nashville’s police chief has ordered a manhunt of his own son after two cops were shot outside a Dollar General.

John C. Drake Jr., 38, is on the run after he allegedly pulled a handgun on the officers outside the store on Stones River Road in La Vergne, Tennessee around 2.20pm Saturday.

Nashville Metro police’s most senior cop, John Drake, said he was ‘shocked and deeply saddened’ to hear that his son is believed to be responsible for the near-fatal shootings.

Officers Ashely Boleyjack and Gregory Kern have been named as the victims and they are both in stable condition.

The ordeal began when the duo pursued a suspected stolen vehicle outside the Dollar General.

When they engaged with Drake Jr., a struggle ensued, where he allegedly pulled a handgun and shot them, according to LaVergne Police Chief Christopher Moews.

Kern was shot in the right groin and right forearm and remains in Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, while Boleyjack suffered a bullet to her left shoulder and was discharged on Saturday.

Nashville Police Chief John Drake said his son must be ‘found and held accountable for his actions’ and urged anyone with information about his whereabouts to contact police.

‘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.

‘My thoughts and prayers are with the two officers, who I understand are now in stable condition at Vanderbilt.

‘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. He now needs to be found and held accountable for his actions.

‘I hope that anyone who sees him or has information about him will contact law enforcement immediately.’

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said a statewide alert had been issued for Drake Jr., who is wanted on two counts of attempted first-degree murder.

Around a dozen law enforcement agencies are involved in the search.

After the shooting, the La Vergne police issued a shelter-in-place order for residents in the city. The shelter order was later lifted while the search for Drake continued, the department said in a social media post.

Mayor Freddie O’Connell issued a statement in support of the police chief.

‘My heart goes out to Chief Drake, his family, and the two wounded LaVergne police officers. I know that despite our best efforts — including in their early years — we can’t be responsible for the choices of family members,’ O’Connell said.

‘I support Chief Drake and stand by him at this difficult time.’