Armed robbery suspect caught after chase and crash

A suspect in multiple area armed robberies is in custody following a pursuit and wreck Monday, according to the Knox County Sheriff's Office. 

KCSO said Keith Richard Kirkland, 33, of Knoxville, is wanted for two armed robberies in Knox County last week. 

He is suspected of robbing the Pilot gas station at 1915 E. Raccoon Valley on Saturday, Oct. 22, and demanding beer and cigarettes at gunpoint. KCSO said Kirkland also showed a handgun and demanded beer and cigarettes at the Dollar General at 1923 Racoon Valley Road on Sunday, Oct. 23.

According to KCSO, the department's Major Crimes Unit tied Kirkland to the robberies through a tag from his 2005 white Chevy Equinox. The department placed warrants for his arrest and broadcast his personal and vehicle description to law enforcement. 

Shortly after noon Monday, officers spotted Kirkland driving the car in the 5300 block of Central Avenue Pike. Officers attempted to pull him over, but Kirkland fled. The crash ended when Kirkland hit a pole and wrecked his car. 

Kirkland and a passenger from the car tried to flee on foot, but were caught by officers, the sheriff's office said. 

(© 2016 WBIR)


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