Crime

Dead suspect in cop killing in Americus identified as Minguell Lembrick , coroner says

Lembrick was a ‘very dangerous individual,’ says GBI Director

GBI Director Vernon Keenan described Americus police shooting suspect Minguell Lembrick as having a long criminal history. The 32-year-old was suspected of shooting Americus police officer Nicholas Ryan Smarr and Georgia Southwestern State Univers
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GBI Director Vernon Keenan described Americus police shooting suspect Minguell Lembrick as having a long criminal history. The 32-year-old was suspected of shooting Americus police officer Nicholas Ryan Smarr and Georgia Southwestern State Univers

The man wanted for killing an Americus police officer and critically wounding another officer is dead.

Sumter County Coroner Greg Hancock confirmed Minguell Lembrick was dead inside a house that was the scene of a SWAT standoff Thursday morning.

A manhunt focused on Lembrick shortly after Wednesday’s shooting of the officers responding to a domestic dispute.

Authorities surrounded a house in Americus where they were looking for Lembrick.

Nearby businesses around Allen Street were locked down as a SWAT team approached the house, according to WGXA reporter Eric Mock, who said he spoke with the chief just before noon.

A law enforcement source told The Telegraph the suspect died of a self-inflicted wound to the head.

At about 11:30 a.m., Sumter County Coroner Greg Hancock said he knew officers had a house surrounded and were about to go in.

As of noon, Hancock was headed to the scene to pronounce the suspect dead, he said.

Authorities identified Lembrick, 32, as the accused shooter of Americus police officer Nicholas Smarr and the wounding of Georgia Southwestern campus police officer Jody Smith, who remains at Medical Center, Navicent Health after undergoing surgery Wednesday.

Early Thursday, Americus police officers and the Georgia State Patrol escorted Smarr’s body to the GBI’s Central Regional Crime Lab for an autopsy.

The Georgia State Patrol and members of the Americus Police Department escorted the body of officer Nick Smarr from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Central Regional Crime Lab after an autopsy Thursday morning, December 8, 2016.

The flag outside the building on Riggins Mill Road was flying at half-staff.

“We’re lowering this flag too often,” lab director Brian Hargett said after the office staff stood at attention as Smarr’s body passed by.

The GBI confirmed Lembrick’s death shortly afternoon and announced details would be released in a 1 p.m. news conference.

For more on this story, come back to macon.com.

Correction: An earlier version of this story misspelled the first name of Minguell Lembrick.

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