TBI: Sneedville man facing charges in officer-involved shooting incident

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HANCOCK COUNTY, Tenn. (WATE/WJHL) – Tennessee Bureau of Investigations announced an arrest and charges against a Sneedville man in connection to an officer-involved shooting that occurred in Hancock County in January.

The TBI was requested to investigate the happenings of an officer-involved shooting on January 16 when deputies with the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of a man threatening to harm himself along Highway 31.

When deputies arrived, they made contact with 53-year-old Charles J. Nicolls Jr., who was holding a gun to his head. Deputies then ordered Nicolls to drop the weapon, but he refused to comply, and while attempting to negotiate with Nicolls, he made a sudden move with the gun, which prompted the officers to fire shots at him, striking him.

He was then transported to a local hospital for treatment.

Monday, June 15, the Hancock County Grand Jury indicted him with two counts of aggravated assault. He’s now booked into the Hancock County Jail on a $100,000 bond.

UPDATE: TBI investigating officer-involved shooting in Hancock County

UPDATE (1 p.m.) – The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has confirmed that the shooting on State Route 31 in Hancock County was officer-involved.

The incident happened near the Hawkins County line at approximately 8:45 a.m. Thursday morning.

When officers arrived at the scene, 53-year-old Charles Nicolls Jr. was holding a gun to his head. Deputies attempted to get Nicholls to drop the weapon for more than a half-hour.

“At some point, for reasons still under investigation, the situation escalated resulting in two deputies firing shots, striking Nicolls,” according to a release from the TBI.

Nicolls was transported to a local hospital for treatment. No officers were injured during the incident.

A News Channel 11 crew said multiple agencies remain at the scene.

TDOT crews have one lane open at this time.

UPDATE (Noon)– News Channel 11 has a crew at the scene of the shooting and said officials with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation arrived on scene late Thursday morning.

Tennessee State Route 31 remained closed at the noon hour.

Photo: WJHL

UPDATE (11:30 a.m.) – Tennessee State Route 31 remains closed between Mooresburg in Hawkins County and Treadway in Hancock County.

A News Channel 11 crew on the scene stated that when they arrived, first responders stated that the closed area was being extended.

HANCOCK COUNTY, Tenn. (WJHL) – Deputies and emergency medical services have responded to a shooting on Tennessee 31 at the Hancock County-Hawkins County line.

According to Hancock County Sheriff’s Office, one person was injured in the incident. That person has been taken to a local hospital.

HCSO told News Channel 11 that they expect traffic over the mountain will be rerouted for about an hour, until about 11 a.m.

Treadway Volunteer Fire Department officials said they are directing traffic on its side of the mountain.

The Tennessee Department of Transportation SmartWay map shows traffic is backed up south of Treadway before Fire Tower Road. It’s also backed up north of Mooresburg near Spruce Pine Road.

Hancock County EMS is also responding to the scene.

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