An attempted carjacking charge has been added to the eight charges already filed against a man accused of injuring an Oak Ridge officer when he fled from police and crashed on South Illinois Avenue last week.
After the five-vehicle crash on Wednesday, April 4, Khristoff Deshawn Lee, 24, of Oak Ridge, was charged with three felony counts of aggravated assault by motor vehicle, two felony counts of reckless endangerment, one felony count of aggravated domestic assault, and one misdemeanor count of evading arrest and another misdemeanor count of resisting, stop, halt, and frisk.
The attempted carjacking charge, a Class C felony, was added Friday, April 6, according to Anderson County court records.
An affidavit filed in Anderson County General Sessions Court in Oak Ridge said Lee, who was reported to be a fugitive, tried to force his way into two different vehicles in the Panera Bread parking lot as he fled from police on foot after the April 4 crash.
“Lee repeatedly grabbed on to the door handles of the vehicles and tried to force his way in,” said the affidavit, which was filed by Oak Ridge Police Department Officer Stephen Romaine.
There is no bond for Lee on that charge, and he remained jailed at the Anderson County Detention Facility in Clinton on Friday morning, according to court and jail records.
The ORPD officer injured in the crash, Nathan Gibson, was released from the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville last week. No information is available on his current condition.
The Tennessee Highway Patrol, which investigated the crash, released a report on Tuesday. It said the two young children in the car allegedly driven by Lee at the time of the crash were not wearing seat belts. One child is two years old and the other is one, and both were injured, the THP report said. The children are not identified because they are juveniles, but they were both taken to Methodist Medical Center of Oak Ridge to be evaluated after the crash, according to the ORPD. Information is not available on their current condition.
The crash was reported at about 12:37 p.m. Wednesday, April 4.
Authorities said Gibson, the injured police officer, had been trying to make a traffic stop and serve a warrant on Lee on South Illinois Avenue at the time of the crash. Officers had information that Lee was in a silver 2005 Lexus E33 four-door sedan that was driven by Autumn H. Burris, 18, of Knoxville, according to the THP and earlier court affidavits, which were also filed by Romaine.
The car turned right onto Woodland Terrace and then right again into the Panera Bread parking lot, the THP said. The driver had refused to stop before entering the Panera Bread and Aubrey’s Restaurant parking area, and the car proceeded through the parking lot at an unsafe speed, the City of Oak Ridge said in a press release last week.
Lee was initially a passenger in the vehicle, but he forced Burris to switch seats with him when he saw officers, after police officers turned on their lights and sirens, according to affidavits and the THP. Lee assaulted Burris and physically forced her out of the driver’s seat while trying to take control of the car, Romaine said in the affidavits. It’s not clear when Lee started driving, but it apparently occurred after the car pulled into the Panera Bread parking lot.
The THP said Lee began to flee, and he drove the wrong way into the Panera Bread drive-through, striking a parked 2010 Honda Accord.
Lee also hit a 2006 Jeep LTD coming through the drive-through, the THP said. That vehicle was driven by Kristina Barton, 31, of Norris. She was wearing a seat belt and was not injured, the THP said.
Lee then turned left back onto Woodland Terrace toward South Illinois Avenue, the THP said. He ran a red light at the intersection of those two roads and drove in front of a northbound vehicle, a 2005 Ford Freestyle, driven by Michael Hill, 34, of Knoxville, the THP said.
The Freestyle driven by Hill hit the car driven by Lee in the left rear side and then deflected into a 2015 Ford Explorer, an ORPD patrol vehicle that was driven by Gibson, the THP said. Gibson was wearing a seat belt and was injured, the THP said. Gibson’s canine partner was also checked by a veterinarian for injuries.
Hill, the driver of the northbound Freestyle that crashed into the Lexus driven by Lee, was wearing a seat belt and was not injured, but he was charged with two violations: driver’s license suspended and financial responsibility, the THP said. A passenger in the vehicle, Danielle Kyle, 18, of Knoxville, was wearing a seat belt and was not injured.
After the crash, Lee fled on foot and was apprehended by ORPD, the THP said.
The THP report cited charges against Lee: fleeing, revoked driver’s license, and reckless driving. It’s not clear if those would be in addition to the nine charges filed by ORPD, but with the possible exception of fleeing/evading arrest, the THP charges appear to be mostly different from the charges filed by ORPD.
The report also cited pending charges against Burris, who was wearing a seat belt and was not injured. It’s not clear in her case either if those charges would be in addition to charges filed by ORPD. Burris has been charged by ORPD with tampering with evidence and simple possession of drugs. The children in the car were identified in affidavits as her children.
Before the crash, a writ of criminal capias had been issued for Lee after he failed to appear at a plea agreement hearing on attempted first-degree murder and robbery charges, among other pending charges, in Anderson County Criminal Court in Clinton on August 14.
Bond for Burris has been set at $26,000. She was released from the Anderson County Detention Facility in Clinton on Friday of last week.
Autumn Burris has been listed as a victim in previous cases where Lee is a defendant, including the attempted first-degree murder case, which involved a fetus (Burris’ baby), and charges of assault and aggravated assault by strangulation or attempted strangulation.
Lee has other pending cases as well, including the robbery, which was an alleged home invasion on Princeton Avenue in September 2014, as well as domestic assault and simple assault charges from November 10, 2017. In the last two charges, Lee is accused of slapping a pregnant woman in the face with a shoe—she wanted to end a relationship with Lee—and slamming another woman’s head into a parked car when she tried to intervene, according to affidavits filed in Anderson County General Sessions Court in Oak Ridge on November 12.
There are also bond forfeiture proceedings pending against Lee for his failure to appear in Anderson County Criminal Court in Clinton on August 14 (there is a $210,000 bond in that case) and in Anderson County General Sessions Court in Oak Ridge on August 22.
In another court action last year, an amended judgement against Lee—he had pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary and theft of more than $1,000 in 2010—said his probation had been revoked on a three-year sentence. That sentence was supposed to be consecutive to sentences in three other Criminal Court indictments. Lee was supposed to report to jail on August 4, 2017, at 6 p.m. to serve the sentence after his probation was revoked, but it doesn’t appear that he did, according to jail records.
See a previous story on last week’s crash here.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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