Brandon Miller, the murder suspect who was arrested Tuesday following an hours-long standoff in a Seymour home in which he barricaded himself, was charged Wednesday with voluntary manslaughter.
Four other people alleged to have been involved with the Jan. 16 shooting in Washington County that resulted in the death of Charles Shelton, have also been charged; two of them are still sought by authorities.
The Washington County Sheriff’s Office held a press conference Wednesday afternoon.
According to officials, a woman named Summer Bentley, who was also taken into custody Tuesday, is charged with violation of probation in Washington County as well as being an accessory after the fact in that police say she fled with Miller and allowed the use of her car.
The other four people involved in the alleged crime include those accused of trying to rob Miller in the Jan. 16 Washington County incident – Hailey Donald (who sustained a gunshot wound from Miller), Jason Hargrove, Allyson Abram and Dylan Childress – all charged with aggravated robbery.
Abram and Childress are still being sought by law enforcement, for outstanding warrants.
Miller is also charged with four counts of attempted voluntary manslaughter, one count of employing a firearm during commission of a dangerous felony, four counts of employing a firearm during an attempt to commit a dangerous felony and three counts of felon in possession in possession of a firearm.
Washington County deputies say they were called to a home on Cash Hollow Road on January 16 for a report of shots fired. They found Shelton dead in the yard with a gunshot wound. They also learned a woman named Hailey Donald had also been shot and had gone to Johnson City Medical Center for treatment and was later released.
Miller was developed as a suspect and was already wanted in three counties for various charges. Miller’s girlfriend Summer Bentley was also wanted for questioning. Both left the scene together after the shooting.
During the investigation, officers say they learned five people arrived at Miller’s Home on Cash Hollow Road and a fight broke out. As the five were leaving, deputies say Miller fired shots from a window that hit Donald and killed Shelton.
Around 3:15 p.m. Tuesday. the US Marshals Service spotted Miller’s vehicle parked at the home of one of Miller’s relatives in Seymour. Eventually, a man fitting Miller’s description was seen getting into a vehicle. Officers tried to stop the vehicle, but Miller took off, leading Sevier County deputies on a chase.
Bentley was found at a relative’s home and was arrested. Deputies then found Miller’s car abandoned on North Cunningham Road and tracked him in the snow to a home on Curley Lane.
Miller was found to have entered the home through an unlocked door where a three-hour standoff ensued. No one was home at the time.
A SWAT team eventually got Miller out of the home and he surrendered without incident.
“After a lengthy negotiation, they were able to talk him out of the residence without incident. No injuries to the suspect or the officers,” said U.S. Marshal, David Jolley.
Deputies from Blount, Knox and Sevier counties were on scene as well as the Tennessee Highway Patrol and ATF.
Neighbors in the direct vicinity of the home where Miller was barricaded were asked to evacuate and after his arrest, were able to get back to their homes.
“I had no idea, because this is such a quiet neighborhood. You hardly ever see a cop up here, much less, a parade of them,” said Anna Prater, a neighbor.
The Blount County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team “took the lead”, according to Jolley, to negotiate with Miller. Those negotiations included the use of diversionary devices, used to divert the suspect’s attention inside the home.