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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Tennessee

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, August 8, 2019

GRAND JURY INDICTS STEVEN WIGGINS ON FEDERAL CHARGES RELATING TO DEATH OF DICKSON COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPUTY

U.S. Attorney Files Notice to Seek the Death Penalty

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – August 8, 2019 – A federal grand jury sitting in Nashville yesterday, returned a four-count indictment charging Steven J. Wiggins, 32, of Dickson, Tennessee with federal carjacking and firearms violations which resulted in the death of Dickson County Sheriff’s Sergeant Daniel Baker.  U.S. Attorney Don Cochran immediately filed a notice with the Court that the government intends to seek the death penalty.

After a thorough review by the Department of Justice, Attorney General William P. Barr recently granted authority to seek the death penalty in this case.

According to the indictment and court records, on May 30, 2018, Sergeant Baker encountered Wiggins after responding to a suspicious vehicle call in Dickson County.  Sergeant Baker subsequently determined that the vehicle Wiggins was occupying was stolen and ordered Wiggins and his passenger out of the car.  Wiggins then fired several rounds at Baker from a .45 caliber handgun.  As the wounded deputy lay on the ground, Wiggins fired several more rounds, killing Baker.  The indictment also alleges that after shooting Sergeant Baker, Wiggins dragged his body to his patrol car and placed him in the rear seat.  Wiggins then drove the patrol car several miles, parked it and set fire to the car.   

Wiggins will make an initial appearance before a U.S. Magistrate Judge at a time yet to be determined.  He is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

Agencies involved in the search and capture of Wiggins and the subsequent investigation include the Dickson County Sheriff’s Department; the 23rd District Attorney General’s Office; the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives; the Tennessee Highway Patrol; the FBI; and numerous other local, state and federal agencies.  U.S. Attorney Don Cochran and Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert McGuire are prosecuting the case.

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Topic(s): 
Firearms Offenses
Violent Crime
Contact: 
David Boling Public Information Officer 615-736-5956 david.boling2@usdoj.gov
Updated August 8, 2019