Theft Suspect, Wanted out of Three TN Counties & Texas, Runs from Police and Gets Held at Gunpoint by Citizen


Mt. Juliet, Tenn. – After a shoplifter stole from Walmart, fled and ran from officers, he was spotted and held at gunpoint by a citizen. This afternoon around 5:44 p.m., an officer gave chase of a shoplifting suspect who stole a hat and sunglasses, worth $37.00. The suspect ran into thick woods near the Triple Crown subdivision and Pleasant Grove Road, prompting officers to establish a perimeter in an effort to take the suspect into custody.

During the search, it was learned that the suspect, identified as James T. Handy, 36, of Lebanon, was wanted out of 3 Tennessee counties and Texas for various charges. A text alert message was sent via Mt. Juliet’s Nixle alert system to notify the public of the active search that included Handy’s description. Citizens began to help police spot Handy as they reported sightings during the search.

As officers pushed through the woods after the suspect, he ran into the Triple Crown neighborhood around 6:44 p.m. A citizen spotted Handy in his backyard, in the 5100 block of Citation Court, and the citizen held Handy at gunpoint until officers caught up. Handy was arrested and charged with Theft of Merchandise, Resisting Arrest, and Evading Arrest. He was also wanted out of Wilson County for Failure to Appear, Jackson County for Resisting Stop, Halt, Frisk and Evading Arrest, Smith County for Violation of Probation, and Texas for Larceny.

Deputies from the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office responded to assist in the search, and Mt. Juliet Police Department greatly appreciates their assistance.


James T. Handy, 36, of Lebanon