Update on I-40 Crash and Shooting

The N.C. Department of Public Safety has released more information on a suspect at the center of an officer-involved shooting and kidnapping in Burke County on Tuesday morning. 45 year old Keisha Michelle Brown, of Villa Rica, Georgia is accused of crashing into several people along Interstate 40, kidnapping another driver at gunpoint, then firing shots at a state trooper. Pending release from a medical facility, Brown will be served with warrants for first-degree kidnapping and first-degree attempted murder.

Officials said troopers were notified at about 6:45 a.m. Tuesday of multiple hit-and-run collisions occurring between McDowell and Burke counties and a subsequent related armed kidnapping on I-40 eastbound near mile marker 114. Witnesses at the scene told reporters that a woman was initially in a different vehicle involved in several interstate crashes.

When another driver pulled over to check on the woman, troopers said the driver was kidnapped at gunpoint and forced to drive east down the interstate.

The suspect was in the truck bed of the kidnapped victim’s vehicle when a trooper spotted it on the shoulder of the road. The suspect fired shots at the trooper, identified as Sgt. Aaron Johnson, and he returned fire.

A woman was flown to the hospital shortly after the incident and late Tuesday afternoon she was reported in stable condition.

The N.C. Department of Transportation (NCDOT) sent out an alert Tuesday reporting a crash had happened just after 7 a.m. on I-40 East near Exit 118, prompting the road to be closed for several hours. The road reopened just before 2 p.m.