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Birmingham News, March 4, 2002

LINK Sylacauga area scoured for five gunbattle suspects

VICKI McCLURE News staff writer

SYLACAUGA Authorities searched the Sylacauga area Monday for five people who fought a 30-minute gunbattle with lawmen Sunday night, injuring a policeman and an Odena woman.

The clash began shortly after the woman, whom authorities declined to identify, encountered the five suspects as she drove down Pine Grove Road in Odena, north of Sylacauga.

The woman pulled over to speak with the group and a fight ensued with a suspect whom she used to date, said Talladega Sheriff Jerry Studdard.

After one suspect started smashing the windows of her Ford, she dialed 911 from her cell phone about 8:30 p.m., Studdard said. The suspects, whom authorities declined to identify, fled to nearby woods.

As two Talladega sheriff's deputies arrived to help the woman, the suspects fired shots from the woods, Studdard said. The woman was hit once in the leg, he said.

The deputies called for backup, and two Sylacauga police officers were the first to arrive. The suspects continued shooting and hit Officer Willie Kidd, 37, in the buttocks.

Once state troopers and authorities from Shelby, St. Clair and Calhoun started to descend upon the scene, the suspects fled on foot, Studdard said.

Law enforcement officials searched the area until 3:30 a.m., but fog and rain hampered their efforts, he said.

Authorities, including the state SWAT team, resumed the search this morning, visiting the suspects' Sylacauga homes and other locations. Kidd and the Odena woman were taken to Coosa Valley Baptist Medical Center in Sylacauga, where authorities said they were treated and released Monday.

Studdard said his department would continue to search for the suspects.

"It is out of the ordinary for people in that particular area to shoot at the police," he said. "A lot of people in the community want to see them picked up."

-- (, April 02, 2002


The suspects continued shooting and hit Officer Willie Kidd, 37, in the buttocks.

Both of them?

-- (, April 02, 2002.

guess thats how disputes are settled in areas where everyone carries a gun.

-- Cherri (, April 02, 2002.


And in the Palestine, where guns are strictly controlled and outlawed, they were bombs.

-- Stephen (, April 02, 2002.

Ummm ... WEAR, not were.

-- Stephen (, April 02, 2002.

Well, actually, they are bombs, kind of.

-- Jack Booted Thug (, April 02, 2002.


One of the worst shootouts that ever occurred back in my home county in NC involved a guy and his girlfriend (and their assorted friends and relations). They started blasting away at one another after an argument; when the cops arrived, the guy's crowd and the girlfriend's crowd established a defacto truce and began blasting away at the cops.

Then there was the guy whose girlfriend ran over him with her car. I think he eventually married her.

Strange people in this world. :)

-- Stephen M. Poole (, April 03, 2002.

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