Tennessee Police Investigating Whether Suspect Knew 7 Victims

Tennessee Police Investigating Whether Suspect Knew 7 Victims
Michael Cummins. (Tennessee Bureau of Investigation via AP)

WESTMORELAND, Tenn.—Police on April 28 raised the death toll at two homes in rural Tennessee to seven and said they are investigating whether a suspect captured after an hours-long manhunt knew the victims.

Michael Cummins, 25, was taken into custody Saturday night after being shot about a mile away from one of the Sumner County crime scenes, said Tennessee Bureau of Investigation spokesman Josh DeVine.

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Law enforcement officials work at a command center set up at North Sumner Elementary School in Bethpage, Tenn., on April 27, 2019. (Mark Humphrey/Photo via AP)

Police said officers responding to a 911 call from a family member led to the original discovery of four bodies and an injured person at the first home. The injured victim was transported to the hospital with unspecified injuries. On Sunday, the TBI said in a statement the body of two more victims had been found at the home.

Another body was found Saturday at another home in the area. The TBI believes the two scenes are related. The slayings were near the town of Westmoreland.

Authorities have not released any details about the victims. They also have not said what kind of weapon was used.

Police vehicles on Sunday blocked access to roads outside the homes.

On Saturday, DeVine said at least one officer fired at Cummins after he emerged from the woods. Cummins is believed to have produced multiple weapons and the situation escalated. He was then taken to a hospital for treatment of what’s believed to be injuries that aren’t life-threatening, DeVine said.

None of the responding officers were hurt.

DeVine said a state law enforcement airplane helped authorities spot Cummins on the ground in a creek bed.

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Law enforcement officials work at a command center set up at North Sumner Elementary School in Bethpage, Tenn., on April 27, 2019. (Mark Humphrey/Photo via AP)

A number of law enforcement agencies had been searching for Cummins, saying earlier that he could be armed and dangerous.

“The community should hopefully be able to rest a little bit easier tonight, knowing that (Cummins) is in custody tonight,” DeVine said.

TBI is investigating the deaths and the officer-involved shooting, DeVine said.

Sumner County is northeast of Nashville not far from the Tennessee line with Kentucky.

Mom and Aunt Arrested Due to Suspicion of Murder of Missing 6-Year-Old

A 6-year-old boy’s mother, Jakee Raquel Contreras, and twin sister Jennifer Rachel Contreras, were arrested for suspicion of murder on April 27, according to the San Bernardino County Sheriff-Coroner Department. 

According to the Sheriff’s department, the mother said that the boy, Duke Flores, had not been seen for over a week. Authorities then immediately searched the area and took Jakee Contreras into custody on Thursday for not reporting his disappearance.

The investigation continued on Friday with interviews and searches, and after speaking with the detectives, Jakee Contreras was booked on suspicion of murder, and later her sister Jennifer was also arrested due to suspicion of murder, according to KTLA. They are both being held without bail.

Duke’s grandmother said that she hasn’t seen her grandson in 10 days, Duke has autism and has wandered off in the past, noted his family.

Epoch Times reporter Samuel Allegri contributed to this report.

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