THP trooper credited with capturing fugitive Steven Wiggins

Tennessee
TROOPER KEVIN BURCH_1527884168339.jpg_44175213_ver1.0_640_360_1527888095394.jpg.jpg

According to Colonel Dereck Stewart, Trooper Kevin Burch was out on patrol when he noticed a man near a wood line. Burch approached the man and discovered it was Wiggins.  

Stewart said Trooper Burch drew his weapon and ordered him to the ground. 

“He was totally obedient to the trooper’s orders,” Stewart said. 

A source told WKRN, Wiggins was begging for food and water. It is unknown if Wiggins was armed when he was taken into custody. Dash cam video has been turned over to the TBI.

Trooper Burch, age 34 of the THP Lawrenceburg District, was the arresting officer. He joined THP in 2017. 

“We’re very pleased this person is in custody and the public is safe,” Acting TBI Director Jason Locke said.   

Wiggins was taken to a nearby hospital for evaluation. TBI spokesperson Susan Niland said Wiggins suffered minor injuries that are “consistent with someone who had been out in the elements for a few days.” 

He will be charged with first-degree premeditated murder upon his release. Sheriff Bledsoe said Wiggins was cuffed with Sgt. Daniel Baker’s handcuffs. 

“Sgt. Baker’s handcuffs were immediately taken into our possession, and they are on the suspect at this time and he will be taken into the Dickson County jail with those,” Bledsoe said. 

Bledsoe said even with Wiggins’ arrest, there is still a long way to go until there is complete closure. 

“This is not closure for us,” he said. “Closure will only come when we lay Daniel Baker to rest and see the criminal case begin. It’s a long process. I will be there each step of the way, Lord willing, even if they have to wheel me in. “

Authorities had been appealing to the public to help in finding Wiggins as multiple law enforcement and state agencies contributed to the reward for his capture.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said it received more than 139 tips in the case.

At last count, the reward for Wiggins’ capture and conviction had grown to $46,000. 

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