Local News

Suspect in Chatham County shootout asked deputies to shoot him

Posted September 18, 2009 4:29 p.m. EDT
Updated September 18, 2009 10:33 p.m. EDT

— A man involved in a shootout with two Chatham County sheriff’s deputies Thursday asked officers to shoot him and at times held his own weapon to his head, according to dashboard camera video shown to the media on Friday.

The deputies, Capt. Roy Allen and Sgt. Chris Perry, were each shot in the leg during the incident, according to the Chatham County Sheriff's Office.

The armed man, David Scott Herring, 35, of 505 Herring Path in Bear Creek, was shot and killed at the scene.

The shootout occurred after a car chase that started near the Moore County line around 12:30 p.m. Thursday when an officer attempted to pull over a vehicle that matched the description of one involved in a shooting about an hour earlier, Maj. Gary Blankenship said.

Annette Rumley, of Siler City Glendon Road, said she called 911 after it appeared the driver of one car was shooting at the driver of another car.

"It sounded just like one shot," Rumley said in the 911 call released on Friday.“I saw a guy in a dark blue shirt running up the road saying, ‘Don’t shoot, don’t shoot.’”

Authorities received a second 911 call minutes later. In that recording, a man told the dispatcher that "somebody pulled up beside my car and shot at me and tried to kill me." He said the gun was large.

The man said his windows were shot out.

When authorities tried to pull over a vehicle matching the description the victim provided, the chase started.

The chase ended 20 to 25 miles away in a standoff around 1:30 p.m. along Alston Bridge Road, east of Siler City, when the suspect in the car refused to surrender, Blankenship said.

Dash-cam video showed officers using a bean-bag gun before exchanging gunfire.

“He had a weapon in the vehicle. We gave him several commands to put the weapon down. He did not. At some point, there was an exchange of gunfire between the suspect and the officers,” Blankenship said.

Around two dozen officers were on the scene when the shootout occurred, the dash-cam video showed. Allen and Perry were injured in the exchange. Five officers fired shots.

The video shows Herring pointing his gun at officers and firing at least two shots before he was shot and killed by officers.

“This man was troubled and he was telling the officers to shoot him,” Blankenship said.

Authorities said the video showed officers acted appropriately in the situation.

“They did not act hastily and they used a lot of restraint in trying to have this thing come to a successful conclusion,” Blankenship said.

Deputies took a second person into custody about an hour later but said he will not be charged. Authorities said the person got out of the vehicle during the chase.

Meanwhile, agents with the State Bureau of Investigation are investigating the shots fired by the deputies, which is a standard procedure.

Allen, who has 18 years of law enforcement experience, was released from the WakeMed on Friday. Perry, who has 14 years experience, remained at the hospital.

Herring had a criminal history, including a charge of speeding to elude arrest in December 1990.