The fugitive who police say tried to murder an officer, sparking a massive, five-day manhunt, died in a shootout with Kentucky State Police early Friday.
Floyd Ray Cook, 62, a convicted rapist and robber, had been on the run since Saturday afternoon, when he allegedly shot and wounded a Tennessee police officer.
Police said two troopers and a U.S. Marshal encountered Cook Friday after responding to a report of shots fired near an embankment on Kentucky Route 61 in Burkesville. When they arrived, Cook and the officers exchanged fire.
Cook was wounded in the shootout and was pronounced dead at the scene by the Cumberland County Coroner. Cook was only armed with a handgun, according to police. No officers were injured by the gunfire.
Authorities had sent out public alerts during the week and schools in Cumberland County closed for three days out of fear that students might cross Cook’s path.
He was spotted at a gas station in White House, Tennessee on Thursday and when officers approached him, Cook rammed two police cruisers and narrowly missed an officer, who drew his gun and fired a shot at Cook’s vehicle.
Tennessee Highway Patrol Lt. Bill Miller said Cook's car careened down a dead-end road, through a fence and into a ravine. The two associates with Cook – Katy McCarty, 35, and Troy Wayne, 50 – were arrested.
Cook was accused of shooting and wounding Algood, Tennessee police officer Ahscari Valencia during a traffic stop Saturday afternoon. Valencia’s life was saved by his bulletproof vest. Cook fled the scene, but was recognized by a Kentucky State Police trooper who tried to stop him in Cumberland County.
Cook tried to speed away, but hit a tree and jumped from the truck on foot. He allegedly opened fire on the officer, missed and fled on foot into the woods.
Cook, who had a criminal record that includes burglary, assault and rioting, was already wanted by the law. He was convicted of raping a 19-year-old in Marion County, Kentucky, in 1971, records show. He was required to register as a sex offender and remains on parole.
Cook's sex offender registration form lists an address in Lebanon, Kentucky. Several months ago, the Marion County Sheriff's Office, making routine checks on the sex offenders in the county, discovered he was no longer living there, said Sheriff Jimmy Clements. Deputies there took out a warrant for his arrest and started searching for him. They discovered he was living at an address in Raywick. They staked out the home but were never able to catch him.
Cook was also indicted in July on charges of first-degree trafficking in methamphetamine and tampering with physical evidence, according to Hardin County court records in Kentucky. He was scheduled for arraignment in August but did not appear.
With Cook no longer on the loose, residents in the area would be able to return to their normal lives, Kentucky State Police public affairs officer Billy Gregory said.
"I think they'll all breathe a little bit easier, knowing there's no longer a threat," he said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.