CLINTON, Mo. — The manhunt continues in Henry County, Missouri, for the man now charged with Sunday night’s murder of Clinton police officer Greg Michael.
The shooting happened during a traffic stop for a vehicle registration violation about 10:45 p.m. on Green Street south of Missouri Route 13 near the Henry County Library.
Missouri State Highway Patrol Sgt. Bill Lowe says Michael, 37, was shot after the driver of a stopped dark gray Dodge Nitro got out of the vehicle and fired a round that hit him.
Ian McCarthy, 39, of Clinton, was charged Monday with first degree murder and armed criminal action. (court documents attached at the bottom of this story)
Michael, 37, had only been with the Clinton PD for a little over a year. Monday, his brother, Chris, spoke about the sudden loss of the man he called “my hero.”
“No, I’m not angry. I’m sad, I am very sad and, but that is why the police department is out there. That is why people are out there today defending, that’s their job and I’m going to let them do that. And I’m going ot be there with my family and I’m going to do this,” Chris Michael said.
“I’m gonna let the world know how big a heart he had. And we’re going to go on down the road, and were going to hope that something good comes out this.”
Investigators believe McCarthy fired one shot, mortally wounding Officer Michael, but that Michael was also able to get off a shot.
Police would not say if there was evidence found to suggest McCarthy was hit, but he wrecked the Nitro a couple of blocks away after fleeing the shooting scene. “If my brother did that, then that’s a hell of a deal because he was my hero before and if he could do that then that’s a pretty good deal. He’d probably take that,” Chris Michael said.
After McCarthy’s Nitro hit an embankment, he then ran from the vehicle on foot. Checkpoints were set up around Clinton Monday.
At about 9:30 p.m. Monday night, law enforcement teams appeared to gather and conference at the city’s new 9-1-1 center. Several locations were staked out earlier in the day where it was thought McCarthy might be hold up, including a closed up school and a number of houses.
McCarthy was not found.
“He is no longer a person of interest, he is a suspect in this killing and he needs to be apprehended before he hurts anybody else,” Missouri State Highway Patrol Sergeant Bill Lowe said. “We’ve tried all kinds of different investigative tools to be able to locate him but we’re doing everything we can for the family to get some closure.”
Court records indicate McCarthy pleaded guilty in Nov. 2013 in Missouri to a misdemeanor driving without a valid license. In July 2015 he was charged with unlawful possession of a firearm. Court records don’t indicate the outcome of that case.
Officials say Officer Michael, a lifelong resident of Clinton, leaves behind a wife and stepsons. “We were strong before, and were strong today. And our community is going ot be a little stronger, and maybe our country is a going to be a little stronger,” Chris Michael said. “He would always light my world. And I will miss him, but I had a great time with him.”
Anyone having any information on the whereabouts of Ian McCarthy are urged to call 9-1-1 immediately. He is considered armed and dangerous.
(KCTV and the Missourinet contributed information for this report)