Fugitive kills himself to avoid capture
A man wanted in North Carolina shoots himself after a traffic stop in St. Petersburg.
By VANESSA GEZARI
Published October 4, 2005
A man wanted on out-of-state felony charges shot himself dead in his pickup truck after police stopped him in northeast St. Petersburg Tuesday morning, officials said.
Police declined to release the man's name because his relatives had not yet been notified, but a spokesman said he was wanted in North Carolina on charges of first-degree rape, first-degree kidnapping and first-degree sexual offense.
The man, who is believed to be in his early 50s, was featured on a recent edition of America's Most Wanted, and someone called with a tip, authorities said. The U.S. Marshal Service tracked him to St. Petersburg, where he is thought to have been living under a false identity.
U.S. Marshals cooperated with St. Petersburg police, who followed the man early Tuesday and stopped him at about 7:24 a.m. near the intersection of 4th Street and 24th Avenue North.
The man gave officers a driver's license, and when they stepped back from the truck to check his identity, he shot himself in the chest, police said. The truck rolled approximately a third of a block before coming to rest in front of a house. He was pronounced dead at a local hospital shortly afterward.
[Last modified October 4, 2005, 12:49:59]
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