Suspect in fatal shooting of Miss. deputy captured
The man suspected of shooting and killing a deputy has been captured following a two-day manhunt
Duty Death: James Blair - [Simpson County, Mississippi]
End of Service: 06/13/2020
SIMPSON COUNTY, Miss. — A man suspected of shooting and killing a deputy has been captured following a two-day manhunt, according to the Mississippi Highway Patrol.
Joaquin Blackwell, 22, was apprehended Saturday in connection with the death of Simpson County deputy James Blair, 77. Blackwell is in the custody of the Rankin County Sheriff's Department, according to the Highway Patrol.
Blackwell had been considered armed and dangerous.
Dave Van, executive director of Regions 8 Health, told local media that family members were concerned about Blackwell's mental health. He was in custody of the Simpson County Sheriff's Department when he was brought to the facility in Mendenhall for an involuntary psychiatric evaluation.
After the evaluation, Van told WJTV, the suspect grabbed the deputy’s gun while getting in the car. Then, he shot the deputy and left the scene, Van said.
According to a neighbor, Blair had been in law enforcement his entire life, having also worked as a paramedic and a school resource officer, WLBT-TV reported.
He was still working because he and his wife were raising their grandsons, whose mother had passed away, the station also reported.