One man was killed and another was injured in a gas station parking lot in the Watson Chapel area Wednesday evening in an altercation that police believe may have started as a road-rage type incident.
Jefferson County Coroner Chad Kelley identified the deceased as Tommy Holcomb Sr., 60. Kelley said Holcomb was pronounced dead by an emergency room doctor at Jefferson Regional Medical Center at 7:06 p.m. Wednesday.
Holcomb’s body will be sent to the state medical examiner’s office Thursday morning for an autopsy.
Holcomb was the younger brother of Jefferson County Judge Mike Holcomb.
No identification was available by press time for the person who was injured in the incident. Police spokesman Lt. Bob Rawlinson described him as a white male and said he was in serious but stable condition Wednesday night at JRMC, where he was being treated for gunshot wounds received in the exchange.
The shooting occurred at the Speedway gas station at 3700 Camden Road. Police were called to the scene at about 6 p.m., Rawlinson said.
Rawlinson said the initial investigation indicates that two vehicles pulled into the parking lot. Holcomb pulled in first, followed closely by a second vehicle, which was being driven by a white female with a white male in the passenger seat. Holcomb, who was driving a maroon Hyundai Santa Fe, got out of his vehicle and went around to the passenger side of the second vehicle, for which a description was not available at press time.
Shots were exchanged between the passenger in the second car and Holcomb.
Holcomb fell to the ground in the parking lot. The second vehicle left the scene and drove to JRMC. Police were interviewing the female driver of the second vehicle Wednesday evening.
“We’re still in the beginning process of this investigation,” Rawlinson said at about 7 p.m. Wednesday. “We’re not releasing names of the victims, pending notification of next of kin. Crime scene is still gathering evidence. We’ll know more when we look at what they’ve got and we get a chance to review the videotapes of the scene.”
Holcomb was a constable and the father of a Jefferson County sheriff’s deputy.
An employee, who asked not to be identified, was working behind the register at the Speedway during the incident. She said there were two people standing in line when they heard what sounded like firecrackers going off.
“When we looked up, we saw the guy laying out on the ground with his arms stretched out,” the employee said, adding that at first, she feared it was her manager because of the clothes Holcomb was wearing. “By the time we looked up, all you could see was the tail lights on that car, pulling out.”
The employee said there was a small gun lying next to Holcomb. She said a nurse who was at a nearby McDonald’s started performing CPR on the victim. But the employee said Holcomb was pale and barely breathing.
“We just could already tell he wasn’t going to make it,” she said.
The homicide is the first of the year for 2012 in Pine Bluff and Jefferson County.