(NASHVILLE, Tenn.) — A rural Tennessee community is on edge as the manhunt intensifies for a double murder suspect who is on the run after a string of violent crimes, authorities said.
Though the search is intensifying for Kirby Gene Wallace in an area north of Nashville, “everybody’s looking after each other, making sure everybody’s safe,” Montgomery County resident Aaron Bird told ABC News.
But Bird isn’t taking any chances, and said he would shoot the murder suspect with his own gun if he saw him.
“There ain’t no telling what he’s gonna do,” Bird said.
Wallace was potentially spotted early Wednesday — a homeowner called 911 to report that he had heard his dogs barking and saw a man trying to get into his porch, authorities said.
The man, who appeared to be carrying a gun, then fled into the woods, authorities said.
Investigators are trying to confirm if Wallace, 53, was the man trying to enter the porch, authorities said.
Another 911 call also came in overnight reporting possible suspicious activity, and since then authorities have deployed more resources and established a second search perimeter, they said.
Anyone with relatives or friends in the area is asked to reach out to them and make sure they are OK, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation spokeswoman Susan Nilan said Wednesday.
Wallace is suspected of killing a 63-year-old woman after she and her husband came home from church on Sept. 23, Stewart County Sheriff Frankie Gray said, according to The Tennessean newspaper. The couple was bound and their house was set on fire, Gray said, according to the newspaper. The husband survived.
Wallace is also suspected of shooting and killing a man and stealing his truck on Monday in Montgomery County, The Tennessean reported.
Days earlier, a woman in her 80s was returning home from church when Wallace allegedly stopped her at her car and forced her into her home at knife-point, the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office said.
Inside the home Wallace allegedly showed the woman a loaded rifle, threatened her and took apart her phone to keep her from calling for help, the sheriff’s office said. Wallace allegedly tied her to her bed before fleeing in her car, officials said.
As the manhunt continues, the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office urged residents to stay inside, keep their doors and windows locked and report any suspicious activity.
Authorities on Tuesday said they can’t rule out if Wallace is getting outside help and vowed to find him “one way or another.”
A $7,500 reward is available for information leading to his capture, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said.
Wallace is described as having gray hair, hazel eyes and possible facial hair. He stands at 5 feet 10 inches tall and weighs 157 pounds, authorities said.
Wallace is wanted on charges including first-degree murder, felony murder, attempted murder, aggravated arson and especially aggravated kidnapping, authorities said.
Anyone with information about his location is asked to call 911.
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