Man charged with running over Memphis officer has court date

In this late Saturday, June 4, 2016, photo, Memphis Police Department mounted police close off Beale Street so investigators can work the scene where Officer Verdell Smith was struck by the fleeing vehicle of a man suspected in a downtown shooting, in Memphis, Tenn. Smith died at Regional Medical Center. (Nikki Boertman/The Commercial Appeal via AP)

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — The case of a man charged with shooting three people and running over and killing a Memphis police officer is heading to a grand jury.

According to The Commercial Appeal, a judge ruled Wednesday that there is enough probable cause for charges including first-degree murder, attempted murder and evading arrest against 21-year-old Justin Welch.

Welch is accused of shooting two people at a restaurant and another person outside the iconic Memphis Pyramid on June 4 in downtown Memphis. All three survived. Police say he led officers on a chase in a stolen car before hitting Officer Verdell Smith, who was clearing pedestrians from the vehicle’s path near Beale Street, a busy tourist destination.

Smith died at a hospital.

A grand jury will decide whether to indict Welch.

Related: Memphis officer struck, killed after 3 shot in Tenn.

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