UPDATED: Knoxville and UT Police looking for shooting suspect

Knoxville (WVLT) - Police are looking for a man they say shot a student in the Fort Sanders area near UT campus.

Police say it happened just after 9:30 Thursday night in the 12-hundred block of Laurel Avenue.

Knoxville Police say they received a call from a man at 1210 Laurel saying his roommate had been shot.

According to police, the victim, James Lesko, 23, formerly of Cookeville, told them he was approached by a man with a gun at 12th Street and Laurel Avenue. He says that man demanded money.

A struggle ensued, and Lesko was shot in the arm. He was taken to UT Medical Center for treatment.

In a text message sent to UT students by police, the suspect is described as a black male, 5' 11" tall, and was last seen wearing jeans, tennis shoes, and a white hoodie. Knoxville police say he was also wearing a white toboggan.

He was last seen running toward 11th Street.

Police say he is armed and dangerous.

If you have information about the incident, call UTPD at 974-3111.


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  • by Howard Location: Knoxville on Jan 27, 2008 at 02:57 PM
    I see both Graham and Brandons points below. Having experienced the parking tickets on campus and seeing the officers not just at the shell station but parked 3 deep at various locations. But I have also participated in a ride-along. Not here in Knoxville but in Metro Nashville.(Davidson Co.) It was no pic-nic for me just as the observer! All in one night we had 3 domestic disputes involving violence toward the officer twice, then we had to do a search for a homicide suspect until the end of the shift. Even then, I was dropped off while the officers continued to work. People want to place an officer on every corner, but they will complain when taxes go up in support of such action. Everyone is quiet until they are victimized by a crime or in some cases "unfairly" ticketed. Then they speak up, "Where is my justice?" "Let me tell you how our legal system FAILED me!" KPD and UTPD.....you are most certainly appreciated by the majority! Keep up the good work!
  • by graham Location: everywhere on Jan 25, 2008 at 03:50 PM
    Hey Brandon, shut the pie hole below your nose and get off the couch. Come out and do a ride-along with the officers and see what police work and reality is all about. You can do a ride-along at any time without having to be "punished" by a coach. Until you see what is going on here in Knoxville and actually see what is happening for yourself, your comments show just how stupid you are. Do a ride-along with us on a Friday or Saturday night during football season instead of going out and gettinng stupid drunk with your homies, then we'll see what you have to say then about being accountable.
  • by Brandon Location: Fort Sanders on Jan 25, 2008 at 01:32 PM
    The fort is patrolled by both the UT police department AND the Knoxville police department. How is it that I can park in a loading zone for five minutes while I run into the library to check out a book, and when I come out I have two parking tickets on my car... and yet there isn't a cop in sight when I walk to the parking deck after dark?!?! How is it that a student can host a keg party and within 5 minutes of turning on a boombox three police cars show up to issue a noise ordinance and a slew of underage drinking citations... and yet there isn't a cop in sight when students get mugged on our public streets?!?! The police in this town are COMPLETELY INEPT! I have witnessed up to four police vehicles sit for hours on end at the Shell gas station on Cumberland Avenue (presumably eating doughnuts and watching intoxicated sorority girls go in and out of the bars). Meanwhile, students continue to be the victims of violent crimes in the Fort. These paper-thin cops need to be held accountable.

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