Kentucky – The man suspected in the weekend shooting death of a Kentucky state trooper has been shot and killed, law enforcement said Monday. Joseph Thomas Johnson-Shanks was hiding about 2 miles from where he shot and killed trooper Cameron Ponder, according to trooper Jay Thomas.
Authorities initially announced on Lyon’s County official Facebook page that Johnson-Shanks was in custody. They provided little details so far on events leading up to his death. Ponder had tried to pull over Johnson-Shanks on Sunday but Johnson-Shanks took off. Ponder pursued for 9 miles, authorities said, and when both cars stopped on Interstate 24 in Western Kentucky, Johnson-Shanks shot multiple times at the trooper. Ponder died late Sunday at a hospital.
Johnson-Shanks ran away. Not much is known about him, Thomas said, except that he was 25 and was from Florissant, Missouri. There were three other people, a woman and two children, in Johnson-Shanks car, said Thomas. They are in custody, but Thomas said he was unsure if they were going to be charged. Ponder is a veteran of the US Navy.