published Wednesday, March 13th, 2013

Suspect in Chattanooga police officer shooting nabbed in manhunt

Celvin “Squeaky” Houston
Celvin “Squeaky” Houston
Photo by Contributed Photo /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

  • photo
    Officers search for a suspect Tuesday near East Lake Courts on Fourth Avenue after a Chattanooga police officer was shot while answering a call.
    Photo by Angela Lewis /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

A 39-year old Chattanooga man was arrested this morning in connection with the Tuesday night shooting of a Chattanooga Police Department officer.

Celvin “Squeaky” Houston is charged with attempted first-degree murder, aggravated assault and unlawful possession of a weapon, Chief Bobby Dodd said this morning.

Houston was arrested without incident about 8:30 a.m. at a residence in the Brainerd area, Dodd said. Family members were believed to be at the home as well, he said.

Area law enforcement agencies and local pastors assisted in the massive manhunt for Houston that began Tuesday night, the chief said.

Officer William McMillan, who has worked for the police department for six years, suffered a nonlife-threatening injury after he was shot while trying to break up a disorder around 2219 E. 26th Street Court. He is listed in stable condition at Erlanger hospital.

Houston has a lengthy arrest record that involves a previous arrest for aggravated assault on police in 2006.

Read more in tomorrow’s Times Free Press.

Chattanooga police officer William McMillan, who has worked for the department for six years, was wounded in the line of duty Tuesday evening while responding to a call.

The officer was responding to a theft call at 2522 Fourth Ave. when he encountered a gunman at 2219 E. 26th Street Court.

The gunman shot the officer just after 6 p.m. before fleeing. The officer was taken to Erlanger hospital and treated for a nonlife-threatening injury. He is listed in stable condition.

“We’re not sure what the interaction was between him and the suspect, if he tried to stop the disorder or walked up on it,” said Chattanooga Police Chief Bobby Dodd.

In response, officers brandished rifles and began going door to door in the area where the officer was shot, searching for the gunman.

The man who police believe is the gunman has a lengthy arrest record that involves a prior arrest for aggravated assault on police in 2006. He pleaded to a lesser charge of simple assault and was sentenced to 11 months and 29 days, court records show.

Officers from numerous law enforcement agencies pitched in to search for the suspected gunman including: East Ridge Police Department, Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office, Lookout Mountain Police Department, FBI and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

“We don’t know if he’s fled the scene or if he’s somewhere in the area,” Dodd said. “There’s a lot of abandoned buildings and vacant apartments around here.”

Fourth Avenue was closed between 2400 and 2700 blocks along with side streets as officers searched into the evening.

Anyone with any information is asked to contact Chattanooga police at 423-698-2525.

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