Staff photo by John Rawlston/Chattanooga Times Free Press - Sep 9, 2010 A police investigator photographs the hands of Tucker King, whose roommate was shot and killed at the home they rented on Johnston Terrace in the Lupton City community on Thursday.
Emily Sailors could not believe that the young man she was dating was dead, shot in the head by robbers.
“No, he’s not!” she sobbed to family members Thursday through tears. “God wouldn’t do this to him.”
Friends and family who gathered at the house where Chance LeCroy was fatally shot in the head Thursday described him as a hard worker with a good personality.
“He’s never appeared to be of any bad character,” said Dick Davenport, the grandfather of Emily Sailors. “It’s somebody that you wouldn’t mind your granddaughter going with.”
Sailors declined to speak to the Times Free Press.
LeCroy was shot in his Hixson rental home at 1211 Johnston Terrace in what police are calling a residential robbery. People at the scene Thursday identified the victim and said he was 20 or 21. Police would not confirm the name Thursday afternoon.
“Robbery and narcotics are suspected to be the motivation behind the incident, but details are still being confirmed,” Sgt. Jerri Weary, Chattanooga police spokeswoman, said in a news release.
Weary said later in a phone interview that investigators found drug-related items in the house. She said she didn’t know any specifics about the items or who owned them.
It was unclear Thursday how many people lived in the medium-sized rental house off East Fairfax Drive. Police were still gathering evidence late Thursday afternoon, Weary said.
She said LeCroy’s roommate called police at 11:57 a.m.
The roommate told police he had been asleep on the couch when two armed people came into the room, Weary said. One put a gun to the roommate’s head, then both ran out of the house, got into a truck and sped off, she added.
Afterward, the roommate found LeCroy dead in his room, police said.
Emily Sailor’s brother, Richard Sailors, went to high school with LeCroy, a 2008 Soddy-Daisy High School graduate and employee of FedEx.
“I don’t think that he was involved with drugs or anything,” Richard Sailors said. “I don’t think that that’s primarily what he was connected with, but perhaps people that he knew were.”
Friends said LeCroy liked dirt biking and cars.
Neighbors described the neighborhood as mostly quiet, but said police sometimes would be called to break up parties at the house, which is at the road with three houses facing it across the street.
“The only time I’ve seen the cops called over here are when the guys over there are throwing a party, and it just gets out of hand,” said Nick Kirk, who lives across the street. “When they throw parties, there’s always a line of cars up and down the road.”
Kirk and his mother, Trish Tate, weren’t home when the shooting occurred, returning only after authorities arrived at the scene.
Tate called the neighborhood “an oasis right outside [Chattanooga].”
“I think it’s a targeted incident — I truly do,” she said.
She said that she has been considering buying a gun for a while, but Thursday’s homicide isn’t going to push her to get one.
“I don’t feel any more compelled than I did a week ago,” she said. “I’m not going to feel unsafe in my home.”