JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (AP) — Deputy U.S. marshals shot and killed a wanted man on railroad tracks in Tennessee after they tried to serve a warrant, authorities in Tennessee said.
Tennessee Bureau of Investigation spokesman Josh DeVine said in a statement that two marshals based in the U.S. Marshal's Greeneville office were trying to serve the warrant Tuesday evening when the man, 39-year-old James K. Maher, brandished a knife.
DeVine said the situation escalated and the two marshals fired their guns at Maher, who died at the scene.
The shooting occurred on the Norfolk Southern Railroad tracks near the Veterans Affairs Medical Center campus.
The TBI, which is investigating the shooting, declined to identify the two deputy marshals involved.
DeVine said investigative findings would be turned over to the district attorney general's office for review.
It wasn't clear why Maher was wanted.
The Johnson City Press (bit.ly/1Uzrk2q) reported Maher had a criminal history and had served time in federal prison and the local jail.
The newspaper cited federal court documents that said Maher was released from custody last month. Court documents show he was arrested in 2009 on a charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm and was sentenced to 2 ½ years in prison followed by three years of supervised release. He was charged in April with violating terms of his release, and his probation was revoked. He was released from federal custody in December, according to the paper.
Records also show he served time at the local jail on charges including theft and burglary.
Information from: Johnson City Press, http://www.johnsoncitypress.com