Atlanta-area police shoot dead wanted man driving Maserati

Reuters News
Posted: Mar 24, 2015 5:50 PM

(Reuters) - A man was shot dead by Atlanta-area police on Tuesday after he tried to flee in a Maserati when police sought to arrest him for a probation violation, authorities said.

The man, who authorities have not named, started driving off before heading toward the officers and forcing them to take "defensive actions," Cobb County Police Department spokesman Sergeant Dana Pierce said.

The man was shot outside a shopping center where officers with the Smyrna Police Department, assisted by officers from the Cobb County Police Department, had come to arrest him, said Pierce.

None of the Cobb County officers fired at the man, Pierce said. It was not immediately clear how many officers opened fire.

The man was identified by his parents as 25-year-old Nicholas Thomas, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution newspaper reported. The paper said that Thomas was African-American.The newspaper reported that a witness to the shooting said that the car struck a curb and was not moving at the officers when they opened fire.

Television images showed police officers surrounding a white car with a shattered rear window and what appeared to be several bullet holes in the side windows.

A spokesman for the Smyrna Police Department did not immediately respond to messages seeking comment.

It was not clear whether the suspect owned the car.

(Reporting by Jonathan Kaminsky in New Orleans. Editing by Andre Grenon and Michael Perry)