published Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

I-24 in Marion County blocked when wanted ex-police officer kills himself

  • photo
    Site where wanted man shot and killed himself along Interstate 24 in Marion County, Tenn.
    Illustration by Laura McNutt.

The wanted man who authorities say killed himself Tuesday alongside Interstate 24 in Marion County, Tenn., was a former police officer who had been in trouble with the law before, Times Free Press archives show.

Charles Keith Murphree, 44, committed suicide between the towns of Jasper and Kimball on the westbound side of the interstate, bringing traffic to a halt Tuesday afternoon.

Murphree, a former police officer in Ider, Ala., was wanted in DeKalb County, Ala. Authorities identified the vehicle he was driving at the Western Sizzlin' restaurant at the Jasper exit. Authorities then followed Murphree west on Interstate 24 for a few miles before he took his own life, officials confirmed.

The Marion County Sheriff's Office received assistance from the Tennessee Highway Patrol before the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation took over the investigation.

In 2012, when Murphree worked as a police officer, he was charged with third-degree domestic assault.

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