2 shot by Metro officers amidst cocaine investigation

Granstaff Apartment shooting, March 31, 2015

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A cocaine peddling investigation resulted in two men being shot by Metro police Tuesday afternoon in north Nashville just south of Metro Center.

It happened around 1 p.m. at the Granstaff Apartments on Rosa L. Parks Boulevard.

Metro police said the wounded suspects, 31-year-old Tyrail Ezell and 17-year-old Joshua Johnson, were shot after they rammed unoccupied police vehicles and swerved in the direction of the officers trying to arrest them.

Tyrail Ezell
Tyrail Ezell

It happened as three Metro detectives spotted Ezell in the parking lot before he got into a car that was boxed in by one of the officers.

As the detectives got out of their cars to make an arrest, Johnson, who was the driver of the car, backed into a police SUV and over a curb before crashing into a police pickup truck and swerving toward all three Metro officers.

The detectives then opened fire on the car in defense as Johnson reportedly rammed a third police vehicle.

Both Ezell and Johnson were injured in the gunfire and transported to a nearby hospital for treatment. Their conditions weren’t immediately released.

A woman in the backseat of the car Johnson was driving was not injured.

The three Metro detectives, identified as David Harper, Matthew Fackler and Christopher Key, all 6-year veterans of the police department, are now on routine administrative assignment while the shooting is investigated.

Authorities said they’d been working to apprehend people dealing crack cocaine along Murfreesboro Pike.

Two attempted to bring them into custody in recent weeks resulted in the suspects escaping by ramming or attempting to ram police vehicles.

Information ultimately led to Ezell’s identification, who is currently on probation from a seven-year felony cocaine sentence in November 2013.

He was wanted on multiple warrants for violating the terms of his probation and community corrections agreement.

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