Man killed in Pigeon Forge Saturday wanted in connection with Cherry Bottom homicide

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JEFF FARRELL Staff Writer/Mountain Press

 PIGEON FORGE—Pigeon Forge Police officers were approaching two people wanted for questioning in relation to a murder in Campbell County Saturday evening, but the confrontation turned violent and one of the two is now dead, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.

TBI identified the deceased Sunday as 43-year-old James Bradley Phillips. Several Pigeon Forge Police approached Phillips and 36-year-old Monica Leigh-Ann Briggs at the Wendy's on the Parkway after learning the two were wanted for questioning in a homicide and that they could be armed.

Officers arrested Briggs on what TBI spokesman Josh DeVine called unrelated charges. He confirmed officers fired at least one shot during the incident. TBI has ordered an autopsy for Phillips. It is not yet clear what happened between the time police approached the pair and Phillips's death.

The incident happened between 9:40 p.m. and 10 p.m. on one of the busiest nights on the Parkway. The popular tourist destination is hosting the Fall Pigeon Forge Rod Run this weekend, and the event draws thousands of car enthusiasts every year.

District Attorney General Jimmy Dunn asked TBI to investigate the incident because it was an officer-involved shooting. He and Pigeon Forge Police Chief Jack Baldwin referred all questions Sunday to TBI. The state law enforcement agency has not released additional information on the incident.

Campbell County authorities had previously announced they were looking to question Phillips and 36-year-old Monica Leigh-Ann Briggs in relation to a homicide investigation stemming from the death of 45-year-old Kenneth G. Koster, of Knoxville, according to information from the LaFollette Press. They also reportedly indicated Phillips and Briggs could be armed.

Koster's remains were found earlier this month near a home in Campbell County.
Authorities there have not disclosed his cause of death.