By Nathan Baker
A man sought by Johnson County officers in connection with an early Monday double shooting was added to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation’s Top Ten Most Wanted List Wednesday after the second full day of the manhunt to track him down.
Johnson County Sheriff Mike Reece said he believed 33-year-old Richard Shane Mabe was still in the county, but said he enlisted the aid of other agencies in the search for the man, who is being considered armed and dangerous.
“We’re regrouping and doing a few different things,” Reece said Wednesday after the Top Ten listing and the accompanying $1,000 reward were announced. “We’ve had all kinds of phone calls, but most have taken us to dead ends.”
Deputies and TBI agents have been searching for Mabe since Monday, after an altercation at a residence on Divide Road in Mountain City that resulted in the shooting of two Mountain City men, Jackie Harless and Michael Laird.
Officers believe Mabe, during a confrontation about an alleged burglary of the home, began wildly firing a 9 mm handgun into the fracas, striking Laird in the abdomen and Harless in the face and leg.
Both men were transported to Johnson City Medical Center for treatment and were released by Wednesday afternoon, according to a hospital attendant.
Mabe fled the scene, according to officers, and was last seen at an apartment complex asking for transportation.
Reece said there have been no other verified sightings since then, but said he believes the publicity and the reward will help in finding him.
“We’re keeping our ear to the ground and following up on phone tips,” the sheriff said. “We’re trying to get somebody to drop a dime on him. It’s not going to be long before we get him.”