On Friday at the request of 11th Judicial District Attorney General Coty Wamp, TBI special agents continue to investigate the circumstances of an officer-involved shooting in Hamilton County overnight, during the effort to recover a missing child from Knox County.
Preliminary information indicates a man, identified as 38-year-old Edward Ahrens, had an 11-year-old girl, the subject of a Tennessee Endangered Child Alert, in his custody and was traveling south on Interstate 75 toward Georgia. Multiple law enforcement agencies, including deputies from the Knox County and Catoosa County, GA sheriff’s departments, followed the vehicle as it exited the interstate at Exit 1 in East Ridge. An encounter ensued, during which preliminary information indicates Ahrens refused to comply with officer commands to surrender and attempted to hit law enforcement officers with his vehicle. As a result, at least four officers fired their weapons into the vehicle, striking Ahrens, who subsequently died. The child did not sustain injury in the incident. Three Knox County deputies sustained minor injuries and received medical treatment at the scene.
At this time, this investigation remains active and ongoing. TBI agents are working to independently determine the series of events leading to the shooting, including collecting evidence and conducting interviews. Throughout the process, investigative findings will be shared with the District Attorney General for her further review and consideration. The TBI acts solely as fact-finders in its cases and does not determine whether the actions of an officer were justified in these types of matters. That decision rests with the District Attorney General requesting TBI’s involvement.