The Mobile Police Department arrested a suspect after a short vehicle chase that culminated with an officer-involved shooting at the corner of Old Shell Road and Upham Street in Midtown Feb. 13. Allegedly, 44-year-old Michael Odell Sims was fleeing a theft at Bel Air Mall and led officers on a pursuit beginning at about 2 p.m..
According to MPD spokesperson Ashley Rains, the suspect was driving a late model silver Ford Mustang at speeds as high as 50 mph and lost control of his car at the intersection, where an officer in a patrol car attempted to pin him in.
Apparently, despite the officer’s multiple warnings, Sims continued his attempt to flee, which prompted the officer to fire as many as six times, according to witnesses on the scene. One witness, who was idling at a red light while traveling northbound on Upham Street, described how the pursuit came to an end.
“All the sudden you hear all this car noise coming through and this grey Mustang wheels around, right in the middle of the intersection…and this cop is in pursuit and ‘BAM!’ slams the side, right in the driver’s side of the Mustang to stop him.”
The witness, who provided a statement to police, said the officer exited his vehicle and pointed his firearm at Sims, but the suspect was trying to “reverse and keep going.”
“At that point [the officer] is in front of the Mustang and the guy has control of his car again and the officer is yelling ‘STOP’ and ‘GET OUT’ and there was some hesitation and we’re all hesitating and I couldn’t see into the Mustang because of the black windows but all of the sudden the officer began firing. And I hit the floor.”
The police department later reported Sims was shot once in the shoulder and treated at the University of South Alabama Medical Center. The officer was uninjured.
Upon his release, Sims was arrested and charged with theft of property third degree, attempting to elude, reckless endangerment, resisting arrest, failure to obey, and unlawful possession of a controlled substance.
According to Mobile County jail logs, Sims has a moderate arrest record dating back to 2001 which includes several charges of theft, receiving stolen property, attempting to elude, resisting arrest and drug charges. A hearing for his most recent charges has been set for March 24. The police officer who fired the shots has not been identified.
Updated to include information about the suspect.