Man charged with attempted murder after shooting in downtown Wilmington

Published: Jun. 20, 2022 at 5:14 AM EDT
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WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - A man who led law enforcement on a chase after an early morning shooting in downtown Wilmington has been charged with attempted murder, according to the Wilmington Police Department.

According to a news release, Downtown Task Force Units responded to a ShotSpotter alert just before 1:30 a.m. in the 600 block of N. 3rd Street. Upon arrival, officers found a 36-year-old man laying down on the sidewalk near the Wilson Center suffering from gunshot wounds. The victim was taken to the hospital by EMS.

“As additional officers were en route, they observed a suspicious vehicle with no headlights on leaving the area of the shooting,” the news release states. “Officers attempted to initiate a traffic stop in the area of N. 4th St. and Cowan St. but the vehicle failed to stop and a chase ensued. The suspect drove head on at law enforcement officers before fleeing. Officers pursued the suspect onto the MLK Jr. Parkway, then onto I-40, west out of the city.

“Authorities in surrounding counties were contacted and also assisted with the pursuit. The vehicle was eventually stopped following a PITT maneuver at the Pender and Duplin County line. The suspect got out of the vehicle, discarded a gun, and began to run away on foot. A WPD K9 was deployed and was able to successfully apprehend the suspect.”

Officials say Kendrick Jihad Johnson, 27, was arrested and taken to Novant Health NHRMC to be evaluated for jail clearance. He has been charged with 1st Degree Attempted Murder and Felony Fleeing to Elude. Johnson is being held at the NHCSO Detention Center without bond.

“This is an ongoing investigation,” the news release states. “The public is encouraged to call the Wilmington Police Department at (910) 343-3609 with any information or use the WPD app. Residents without access to a smartphone can share information with police by sending an anonymous text message to 847411 (Tip411) and including the keyword WPDNC.”

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