FAIRVIEW, Tenn. (WKRN) – A Fairview police officer has been cleared of any criminal wrongdoing in a police shooting this past September.
One man died during that violent confrontation, and a veteran officer was on administrative leave until Monday.
What happened early that morning has not been made public until now.
According to police reports obtained by News 2, it all started with a disturbance call on Hill Hughes Road on Sept. 26.
Sgt. Kodi Knight responded and found Jeffory Hughes, who told the officer to “get the F off his property.”
According to the police report, Sgt. Knight tried to explain why he was there, and he says the 50-year-old “produced a handgun,” which he pointed at the officer.
That gun is later identified as a .45 caliber that was loaded with a bullet in the chamber.
Knight says he drew his weapon and told Hughes to put his down.
According to the sergeant, “Hughes approached me and got close enough that I had to push him back. This happened several times, all the while Hughes was pointing his weapon at me. I continued to order Hughes to drop the gun and he replied, ‘F you, shoot me.’”
That’s when back-up officer Terry Amonette arrives. Dash cam shows the veteran officer get out of his car with an AR 15.
He reportedly approaches the two men who are in the driveway.
By this time, Knight writes in his report, “I noticed that Hughes had placed his pistol in a holster that was on his right hip. I transitioned form my firearm to my Taser and approached Hughes from his left side rear.”
Knight writes, “Hughes told officer Amonette that no Fairview police officer was going to tell him what to do on his property. At this time I attempted to taze Hughes as his weapon was holstered. When the tazer was deployed only one of the barbs made contact with Hughes and was ineffective. Hughes, being struck with the taser but not getting the effect turned towards me and said “you son of a bitch” then drew his weapon from its holster and swung it towards me. As the weapon came on line with me officer Amonette fired several rounds from his AR-15, striking Hughes.”
The sergeant continues, “Hughes fell face down and dropped the weapon and then rolled over onto his back.”
Sgt. Knight says police would later find a loaded shotgun nearby.
Officer Amonette’s account is similar. In his report, he says he yelled at Hughes as he approached, saying, “THIS IS A %$^& AR 15 DON’T DO ANYTHING STUPID,” to which Hughes reportedly says, “No Fairview police officer is going to tell me what to do.”
That’s when dash cam shows Hughes aggressively approaching Amonette. He is not holding a gun at the time, but there is a gun in a holster on his side.
That’s when the two move off camera. Video then shows Sgt. Knight transitioning from his sidearm to a Taser, deploying it, but it was ineffective.
According to police, that’s when Hughes – off camera – pulled his .45 and turned to shoot Knight, who you can see flinch moments before.
Amonette fires seven times. You can hear both officers then yell for help. Hughes is pronounced dead in the driveway.
In the moments following the shooting, you can hear a distraught Amonette.
“I just shot someone, chief. I just shot somebody,” he is heard saying.
A short time later, you can hear Knight say, “He pulled a freaking gun on me. You saved my life.”
According to the police report, Terry Amonette has resigned from the Fairview Police Department to join another agency.
The chief says it had nothing to do with the shooting and he left in good standing with the Fairview Police Department.
News 2 attempted to reach the family of Hughes but the gate to their home as locked. Neither the police chief nor the DA will talk further due to the possibility of a pending civil case.
A check of Hughes’ criminal history shows multiple aggravated assault and resisting arrest charges.