A murder suspect in Tennessee was taken into custody after he crashed his minivan during a high-speed chase with officers who then found the body of a man inside the vehicle, authorities said.
On the afternoon of March 31, Knoxville police filed a missing person's report on 27-year-old Justin Goins, WVLT reported.
According to witnesses, Goins’ vehicle was parked behind a residence along with a maroon Chrysler minivan, police said.
The witnesses told police when they attempted to go toward the minivan, the suspect, later identified as Darius Smith, 25, fled the scene in a third vehicle.
Goins’ vehicle then disappeared from the property but was eventually found a short distance away. “The victim’s car had been thoroughly cleaned with a chemical cleaner, but a small amount of blood was found in the cupholder of the victim’s vehicle," Knoxville Police Department spokesman Scott Erland said.
Around 3:15 p.m. the following afternoon, April 1, police located the minivan and attempted to pull it over after the driver committed a traffic violation.
Cops later confirmed the driver was Smith and said he attempted to flee authorities on foot after he smashed the vehicle into a tree following a high-speed chase.
Officers were able to apprehend the suspect as he attempted to hide under a bed inside a home near the crash scene, court documents obtained by Knox News show.
Officers obtained a search warrant for Smith’s minivan and discovered Goins’ body in the back.
Police said the victim, who was shot six times, died from his wounds.
Smith faces charges of first-degree murder as well as felony evading arrest and reckless driving. He was being held in lieu of $100,000 bond, jail records show.
Court documents state the victim’s ex-girlfriend was in a relationship with Smith and investigators learned there may have been threats made, according to Knox News.