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Kentucky state trooper killed after pursuit

Posted at 6:43 AM, Sep 14, 2015

LYON COUNTY, Kentucky — The man suspected in the weekend shooting death of a Kentucky state trooper has been shot and killed, law enforcement said Monday.

Joseph Thomas Johnson-Shanks was hiding about two miles from where he shot is believed to have shot and killed Trooper Cameron Ponder, according to Trooper Jay Thomas.

Authorities initially announced on Lyons County’s official Facebook page that Johnson-Shanks was in custody. They have provided little details so far on events leading up to his death.

Ponder had tried to pull over Johnson-Shanks on Sunday, but Johnson-Shanks took off. Ponder pursued for nine miles, authorities said, and when both cars stopped on I-24 southeast of Paducah, Johnson-Shanks shot multiple times at the trooper. Ponder died late Sunday at a hospital.

Not much is known about Johnson-Shanks, Thomas said, except that he was 25 and was from Florissant, Missouri.

Ponder is a veteran of the U.S. Navy.