Admitted cop-killer Jesse Mathews accepted a plea offer from prosecutors and will serve life without parole plus 25 years for the 2011 shooting death of Chattanooga police Sgt. Tim Chapin.
Chapin stopped Mathews on April 2, 2011, as he fled a robbery of the U.S. Money Shops on Brainerd Road. The sergeant hit Mathews with his patrol cruiser after the fugitive had fired on two other police officers.
The pair traded gunshots until one of Mathews’ bullets killed Chapin.
Mathews faced a Jan. 22, 2013, death penalty trial and likely lengthy appeals if convicted.
He had fled a Colorado halfway house where he was on parole for a previous armed robbery.
Mathews met family members in Chattanooga while a fugitive. His mother, father, sister and sister’s boyfriend were sentenced in federal court in February for crimes related to aiding him during his flight from Colorado.
For complete details, see tomorrow’s Chattanooga Times Free Press.
Todd South covers courts, poverty, technology, military and veterans for the Times Free Press. He has worked at the paper since 2008 and previously covered crime and safety in Southeast Tennessee and North Georgia. Todd’s hometown is Dodge City, Kan. He served five years in the U.S. Marine Corps and deployed to Iraq before returning to school for his journalism degree from the University of Georgia. Todd previously worked at the Anniston (Ala.) Star. Contact ...